Category Archives: Mazarin

On Ecclesiastic’s Desk.

Cardinal Mazarini’s desk. Impressive! Provided that it is really his. He certainly had one, and we can imagine this, or something like this, in his library. “I recommend you this young man,” joked Richelieu introducing Mazarini, “You will like him! … Continue reading

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Seven Elephants (footnote to Twelve Caesars)

That’s what my grandmother had on her bookshelf, seven marble elephants. They were arranged in a file, from the biggest, about 3 cm tall, to the smallest, about 2.5 cm. The white marble elephants with an occasional gray vein running … Continue reading

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The Twelve Caesars

People often ask me when shuffling along the hallways of Chateau Versailles, “Are those allegorical figures?” Not exactly, no, but these are excellent examples of XVII century kitsch. The Italian workshops have flooded Europe with art for mass consumption. The figures are … Continue reading

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Mazarin, the Libertin

“Had he lived any longer, I don’t know what I’d do,” the twenty-one-year-old Louis XIV was reported to say upon the death of his Prime Minister and mentor, Cardinal Mazarin. Cardinal’s death made certainly an event in history. As for … Continue reading

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This fountain is an allegorical interpretation of the Sun King’s unhappy childhood. If you remember Alexander Dumas’ Twenty Years After, the novel begins with the flight of the Queen Anne of Austria and Cardinal Mazarin. It is d’Artagnan who escorts them out of Paris. After the … Continue reading

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3+1 Musketeer

D’Artagnan, the fourth Musketeer who gives to the title of Dumas’ novel a mystical, even metaphysical dimension, is indeed the captain of the elite guard here at the Court of Louis XIV. The sequel to The Three Musketeers, The Twenty and … Continue reading

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