Meet the family

While film and television dramatizations of Alexandre Dumas’s The Three Musketeersare often fast and loose with historical fact, even on occasion presenting the future Louis XIV as the son of Aramis the Musketeer, this family tree of the French royal family explores the ancestry and posterity of the Sun King.

  • Maria-Theresa of Austria
    Louis XIV’s wife was also a princess of Spain, his first cousin. Theirs was a political marriage, and she was somewhat isolated at court.
  • Louis of France, the Grand Dauphin (known as Monseigneur)
    The only child of his parents to survive to adulthood, Louis nevertheless predeceased his father, never to become king himself.
  • The Duke and Duchess of Burgundy
    The Duke of Burgundy was the king’s grandson and heir. He married Louis’ great-niece, the granddaughter of his brother and Henrietta of England. The Duchess was a great favourite at court and the king was heartbroken when the couple died within days of each other from measles.
  • Philippe, Duke of Orléans, the king’s brother (known as Monsieur)
    Younger son of Louis XIII and brother of Louis XIV, Philippe was kept out of the political arena as much as possible.
  • Henrietta of England
    Sister of Charles II of England and married to Monsieur, Henrietta was the life and soul of the court until her untimely death at the age of 26.

A portrait of Louis XIV and his family (right) and Monsieur and his family in Classical garb by Jean Nocret (Wikimedia commons)

Voltaire Foundation

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