Casanova, Lottery and the Taking of the Bastille

Casanova’s reputation as a lover has by far surpassed his ability as a businessman. Yet the famous Venetian knew how to combine his pleasure with business. And his main business in mid-XVIII century Paris was lottery. In 1757 Madame Pompadour had introduced the Italian adventurer to the Court of Versailles for the purpose of creating a financial scheme that would allow Louis XV to construct the Military School on the Champs de Mars. Such was the remarkable beginning of the Royal Lottery. Its end is equally worthy of a mention. It came in 1776, and its connection with the taking of the Bastille has perked my attention. For even though the Parisians were busy storming and destroying the bastion of tyranny, they did not forget two days after to show up at the last drawing of their other most favorite event.

This entry was posted in Casanova, French Revolution, Louis XV, Madam Pompadour, Madame Pompadour. Bookmark the permalink.

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