Lesson

Absolute Monarch: The Reign of Louis XIV in France

Lesson Overview

     What are the key characteristics of absolute monarchies in Europe? Louis XIV of France is one example of an absolute monarch.  After a century of war and riots in France,  Louis XIV became the most powerful monarch of his time. Louis’s abuse of power led to revolution that would inspire the call for democratic government throughout the world
     “L’etat, c’est moi,” “I am the state,” said King Louis XIV of France.  Louis believed that he was the only one responsible for governing France when he ruled from 1643 to 1715.  Louis serves as an excellent example of the absolute monarch who commanded complete loyalty and imposed his vision on his country without consideration of the consequences. 
     A tutor to his son once said, “As God’s representative on Earth, the king was entitled to unquestioning obedience.  Louis reigned from the most magnificent building in Europe, the palace of Versailles.  Full of the finest paintings, statues, chandeliers and mirrors, and surrounded by millions of flowers and plants, Versailles was the perfect symbol of Louis’ wealth and power. During his 72 year reign, the Estates General, the legislative body of France, never met once.  Without opposition he revoked the Edict of Nantes and taxed his people in order to wage costly wars against the Dutch and English. In examining the reign of Louis XIV, students will be able to judge the role of the absolute monarch in Europe's development.  The student will be able to complete an organizer of Louis XIV’s reign in which each section shows how he used his power as an absolute monarch and expanded the land and influence of France as a European power.
 

Duration
2-3 hours
Lesson Type
Traditional Lesson

Essential Question

How can we explain Louis XIV’s policies in ruling France as an absolute monarchy and characterize the style of his court? 

Grade(s):

Subject(s):

Other Instructional Materials or Notes:

7

Social Studies

1.   Painting of Louis XIV shown on Google slide or copy in folder.
2.  Google Slides presentation on Louis XIV, his palace, his court, and his wars
3.  Two pocket folder with organizers, notes pages, and vocabulary for each student
4.  Graphic organizer for students to list examples of Louis XIV’s actions regarding the nobility, bureaucracy, laws, religion, trade, taxes, the economy, the military, conflicts, art, education, and architecture.
5.  Painting analysis form adapted from the Library of Congress to describe the painting of Louis XIV.
6.  Text and close reading form for Louis XIV's Letter to his Son.
7.  Essay organizer
8.  Essay evaluation rubric.

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Lesson Created By: Eugene Ramsey Hardin IV