Visitors to Versailles From Louis XIV to the French Revolution Daniëlle O. Kisluk-Grosheide, Bertrand Rondot

Publication date:
24 Apr 2018
Metropolitan Museum of Art
392 pages: 279 x 241mm
334 color illus.
Sales territories:

A fascinating look at the splendor of the French court at Versailles through the eyes of its numerous visitors

What was it like to visit one of the most magnificent courts of Europe? Based on a wealth of contemporary documents and surviving works of art, this lavish book explores the experiences of those who flocked to the palace and grounds of Versailles when it was the seat of the French monarchy. Engaging essays describe methods of transportation, the elaborate codes of dress and etiquette, precious diplomatic gifts, royal audiences, and tours of the buildings and gardens. Also presented are the many types of visitors and guests who eagerly made their way to this center of power and culture, including day-trippers and Grand Tourists, European diplomats, overseas ambassadors, incognito travelers, and Americans.
Through paintings and portraits, furniture, tapestries, carpets, costumes and uniforms, porcelain, gold boxes, sculpture, arms and armor, engravings, and guidebooks, Visitors to Versailles illuminates what travelers encountered at court and what impressions, gifts, and souvenirs they took home with them. Versailles continues to impress millions of tourists today just as it enchanted generations of ancien régime visitors, whose experiences are brought to life in this sumptuously illustrated volume. 

Daniëlle O. Kisluk-Grosheide is the Henry R. Kravis Curator in the Department of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Bertrand Rondot is Conservateur en chef at the Établissement Public du Château, du Musée et du Domaine National de Versailles. 

“It is all beautifully written up and lavishly illustrated in this highly recommended book.” – James Yorke, The Spectator

A “sumptuous catalogue” – Country Life

“The book is highly recommended for its fascinating sartorial look at court, not only through its splendid photographs, but also through the vivid way it has recorded the observations of those who flocked to the Château de Versailles, providing a wealth of material that offers fresh insight into the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries”—Alice Mackrell, Journal of Dress History