Paris: Versailles Palace

The Palace at Versailles.  I doubt there is a greater symbol in the world to decadence and power than this.  Built by King Louis XIV in the late 17th Century, the Sun King showcased his power through this new capital.  It was far removed from Paris and the crowds of people.  It was a place for the King and his court to withdraw and where the King  could keep a close eye on his noblemen to ensure that his power was absolute and unchallenged.  The infamous Hall of Mirrors, a splendid room specifically designed to showcase the opulence of Louis’ wealth and power has the dubious honor of being the site of the end of both the Franco-Prussian war and World War I. Ominously, however, both conflicts helped fuel worse conflicts than they ended.

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