Grand Trianon

Grand Trianon

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Grand Trianon

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Description:
The Grand Trianon () was built in the northwestern part of the Domain of Versailles at the request of Louis XIV, as a retreat for the King and his maîtresse en titre of the time, the marquise de Montespan, and as a place where the King and invited guests could take light meals (collations) away from the strict étiquette of the Court.

The Grand Trianon is set within its own park, which includes the Petit Trianon (the much smaller château built between 1762 and 1768 during the reign of Louis XV).

History

In 1668, Louis XIV purchased Trianon, a hamlet on the outskirts of Versailles, and commissioned the architect Louis Le Vau to design a porcelain pavilion (Trianon de porcelaine) to be built there.

The façade was made of white and blue Delft-style "porcelain" (ceramic) tiles from the French manufactures of Rouen, Lisieux, Nevers and Saint-Cloud. Construction began in 1670 and was finished in 1672.

By 1687, the fragile ceramic tiles had deteriorated to such a point that Louis XIV ordered the demolition of the pavilion and its replacement with one made of stronger material. Commission of the work was entrusted to the architect Jules Hardouin Mansart. Hardouin-Mansart's new structure was twice the size of the porcelain pavilion, and the material used was red marble of...
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