Tuesday, 25 June 2013

The Apprenticeship of Peter the Great II

Sophia’s Regency

Sophia as Regent
Their success at forcing Ivan onto the throne and making Sophia Regent led the Streltsy to believe that their slightest whim would now be honoured. The Old Believers[i] thought that the Streltsy would support the return of the old liturgy and rituals. Sophia, like her brother Feodor and her father, saw the Old Believers as rebels and she wooed the Streltsy, bribing them with money and drink, in groups of circa one hundred at a time.

When the Streltsy were in her pocket the leaders of the Old Believers were arrested; one was executed and the remainder exiled. Prince Ivan Khovansky[ii], one of Sophia’s advisers but also one of the fervent Old Believers, was one of those executed. This struggle between old and new within Orthodoxy was to continue throughout the lifetime of the Russian Empire.

One of Sophia’s first acts as regent was to place her own men in key positions; but her principal adviser was her lover Prince Galitzyne. Galitzyne hoped to transform the Russian army, establish permanent relations with the West, proclaim freedom of worship and even, most heretical of all, freeing the serfs. Galitzyne prided himself on administering;
‘A reign based on justice and general consent.’[iii]
Sophia as a woman was expected to stay out of politics and hide in the terem. Instead she hid behind the public personae of Ivan and Peter and Galitzyne. In private she ruled.

Prince Galitzyne
During the Regency domestic difficulties increasingly diverted attention away from the western veneer Galitzyne had been encouraging.. From the beginning Sophia and Galitzyne had been determined on a peaceful foreign policy to enable freedom of action at home. The war against the Tartars resulted in a freezing of domestic reform.
Peter and Ivan

While Sophia was able to rule the country on her own, there were occasions when she was unable to dispense with Ivan and Peter’s attendance at ceremonial occasions; state banquets, religious festivals, and receiving foreign ambassadors. In 1683 the two Czars received the Swedish ambassador.
‘Both their Majesties sat……….on a silver throne like a bishop’s chair, somewhat raised and covered with red cloth. The Tsars wore robes of silver cloth woven with red and white flowers…………the elder drew his cap down over his eyes several times and, with looks cast down on the floor, sat almost immobile. The younger had a frank and open face………..He constantly looked about, and his great beauty and lively manner………..struck all of us so much that had he been an ordinary youth and no imperial personage we would gladly laughed and talked with him.’[iv]
Peter was now so tall that the ambassador took the eleven year old for sixteen. The half brothers were kept separate, but they did manage under these difficult circumstances to retain a loving relationship. The Dutch ambassador wrote home to say that

‘The natural love and intelligence between the two Lords [Ivan and Peter] is even better than before.’[v]
Praskovia Saltykova
Ivan and Feodor had called Natalya mother, since her marriage to their father. To ensure the continuation of their rule Sophia and advisers decided that the sickly Ivan, whose life span was likely to be short, should marry. His wife presented him with a daughter each year from 1689 to 1691; there was a gap in 1692 and then in 1693 and 1694 Praskovia Saltykova presented Ivan with two more daughters[vi].
Peter’s War Games

To escape the oppressive atmosphere in the Kremlin, Peter and Natalya moved to live at Alexis’ favourite villa and hunting lodge at Preobrazhenskoe; about three miles outside Moscow. Here, in the fields and woods, Peter could play his favourite game – WAR. For his games Peter drew on the government arsenal to supply his needs. On his eleventh birthday Peter had real cannon to fire the salute.
Peter had playmates to join in his games. As he grew older his father’s servants and their families and the scions of noble families were enrolled in Peter’s little force, which eventually numbered around three hundred. Peter declined to rule this little army; originally he took the rank of drummer boy, eventually promoting himself to artilleryman. This was to enable him to fire the cannon.

In the barracks, built especially for this mini-army, Peter accepted the same rules as his fellows, performing the same duties, slept in the same tents and stood watch or digging trenches. This refusal to start at the top was characteristic of the man too, who never accepted a promotion in the armed forces unless he felt he deserved it. Peter firmly believed in learning from the bottom up.
In 1685 the little army began to construct a fort from the ground up. Once completed Peter blew it up, just to see if he could. Peter used specialists to advise him and these specialists were usually foreigners. The foreigners normally arrived as temporary instructors; but by the time in the early 1690’s when two regiments[vii] were formed from the boy army, many of the foreigners became officers in the new regiments. Sophia occasionally loaned regiments of the Streltsy to join in the war games.

Peter and the Boat
Peter was fascinated by all and everything; he learnt stonemasonry, carpentry, bookbinding, wood and ivory turning and blacksmithing. Once at Preobrazhenskoe Peter dispensed with a formal education. He read few books, his handwriting was atrocious and he learnt no foreign languages[viii]. As an adult Peter was to regret this lack of a formal disciplined education.

In 1687 the chance mention of a strange foreign measuring instrument[ix] led to Peter being bought a sextant and Peter then found a Dutch merchant who knew how to use the instrument. Franz Timmerman was to become very important to Peter; insisting that he could not teach Peter how to use the sextant without certain basic skills. Peter now turned his attention to arithmetic, geometry and ballistics.

The botik of Peter the Great
Timmerman was often with Peter and it was in June 1688 when Timmerman and Peter were strolling through a royal estate that the pair came across the decaying remains of a boat. It was an English boat that Timmerman assured Peter could sail against the wind[x]. Peter ordered the major repairs needed to make the boat seaworthy; these were done under the supervision of another Dutchman Karsten Brandt. Peter became enamoured of sailing and set up a boat builder’s yard on Lake Pleschev, using the skills of his Dutch advisers.  
As Czar, Peter was to continue the use of foreign expertise in his attempts to drag Russia into the eighteenth century. And he was to remain fixated on sea power.

In the Crimea

Jan Sobieski, King of Poland
n 1683 the Ottoman army camped before the gates of Vienna; it was the Polish king Jan Sobieski who led the Christian forces to victory. The majority of European rulers were more concerned about the might of France, so Poland and Austria were eager to persuade Russia to support the fight against the heretical Turks.
In 1685 the Turks defeated the Poles and the spring of 1686 saw a Polish embassy arrive in Moscow, seeking an alliance against the Sublime Porte. Poland formally ceded the ancient city of Kiev to the Russians and in return Sophia agreed to attack the Khan of the Crimea[xi]; a decision that was to cost her dear. The agreement with the Poles required a reversal in the previously friendly relations between the Ottomans and the Russians.

The Crimean Tartars had long been a thorn in the Russian side; many Tartar raids took Russians off to sell in the slave markets of Istanbul. In May 1687 a Russian army of 100,000 marched out towards Orel and Poltava. Galitzyne, the army’s commander, was wary of being outflanked by the Tartars and by June 13th was camped on the bank of the Dnieper river.
The Tartars were meanwhile setting fire to the steppes, to deprive the invading Russians of forage for their horses and at times the army was engulfed in smoke, choking both men and animals. By August the army was in retreat. On his return to Moscow Galitzyne described his campaign as a success and was hailed as a hero by his lover. The reality was soon apparent.

In 1688 matters worsened for the allies. Louis XIV attacked the Hapsburgs in Germany. And in mid 1688 the Tartars ravaged the Ukraine, returning home with nearly 60,000 victims for the slave markets. The Poles and the Austrians were seriously considering coming to terms with the Turks. The only factor that would change their minds was a further attack in the Crimea by the Russians. Faced with the possibility of returning Kiev to the Poles, Sophia and Galitzyne agreed to a second campaign.
Galitzyne announced the second campaign. He was under attack from personal and political enemies in Moscow, who were able to ensure that he commanded this fiasco too. The campaign was once again a failure, but this was not how it was reported in Moscow. Sophia hailed Galitzyne as a hero again, writing to him;

‘Oh my joy, light of my eyes, how can I believe my heart that I am going to see you again, my love. That day will be great to me when you, my soul, shall come to me. If it were only possible for me, I would place you before me in a single day.’[xii]
However François Lefort, a Swiss officer in the Russian army, wrote home;

’20,000 killed and 15,000 taken prisoners. Besides that, seventy cannon were abandoned, and all the war material.’[xiii]
On July 8th, breaking with protocol, Sophia met Galitzyne at the gates of Moscow and Galitzyne was received and publicly thanked by Ivan and the Patriarch.

Peter declined to play in this charade, forced to agree to reward Galitzyne, he refused to meet with him, as protocol demanded, when Galitzyne attended Preobrazhenskoe to thank the Czar for his generosity one of the senior foreign officers, General Patrick Gordon noted;
‘Everyone saw plainly and knew that the consent of the younger Tsar had not been extorted without the greatest difficulty and that this merely made him more excited against the generalissimo and the most prominent members of the other party at court; for it was now seen that an open breach was imminent.’[xiv]

Natasha’s Dance – Orlando Figes, Penguin Books Ltd 2002
Russia and the Russians – Geoffrey Hosking, The Penguin Press 2001

Peter the Great – Robert K Massie, Abacus 1992

[i] The Orthodox religion had been split, those who wanted change and those who wanted to turn the clock back
[ii] Sophia had appointed him as the new commander of the Streltsy
[iii] Peter the Great - Massie
[iv] Ibid
[v] Ibid
[vi] Females were unable to inherit the throne
[vii] The Preobazhensky and Semyonovsky Regiments
[viii] Apart from a smattering of German and Dutch on his trip to Europe.
[ix] Russia was still very much medieval in outlook and habit
[x] Something no Russian boat was capable of doing
[xi] A vassal of the Ottoman Empire
[xii] Peter the Great - Massie
[xiii] Ibid
[xiv] Ibid

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

The Apprenticeship of Peter the Great

The Young Czar

Francois Lefort
In 1697 the courts of Europe were astounded by the arrival of a young man travelling incognito; armed with the highest of credentials, the youthful Peter Mikhailov[i] met with kings and shipwrights, princes and carpenters.

He was Czar Pyotr Alexeyevich, now sole ruler of the Russian empire[ii]. The seven foot giant arrived in the Netherlands, ready to proffer his support to William III against the encroachment of Louis XIV’s France. Peter and his military advisers were alarmed by the possibility of renewed attacks from the Ottoman Empire. His solution was to persuade the rulers of Western Europe to join with Russia in repelling the invaders.

Peter’s fascination with Western Europe had been fostered by the Swiss captain of his personal guard; François Jacobiwitz leFort. LeFort had begun his military career in the Netherlands and had served in a disastrous campaign against the Tartars in Crimea.

Czar Alexis
Peter was born on 9th June 1672, the son of Czar Alexis, by his second wife Natalya Naryshkina. Peter was the fourth of Alexis’ children; he had two older brothers and an older sister[iii].

At the age of two Peter had a staff of fourteen and a grand apartment in the Kremlin. The royal children had dwarf servants trained to act as servants and playmates. From an early age Peter’s favourite toys were ones with a military flavour.

‘Toy soldiers and forts, model pikes, swords, arquebuses and pistols spread across his tables and chairs and floor. Next to his bed, Peter kept his most precious toy, given to him by Matveyev…………a model of a boat.’[iv]

Peter was often taken out by his father, who doted on this youngest of his children. An ambassador form Austria caught sight of the young Czarevitch;

‘The door opened suddenly and Peter, three years old, a curly headed boy, was seen for a moment holding his mother’s hand.’[v].
Peter was only three years old when his father died on 29th January 1676. His half-brothers and sister were protected by their mother Maria Miloslavskaya’s powerful family. Peter’s mother was from a less well-connected clan.

Death of a Half Brother

Czar Feodor III
Peter’s elder brother, the fifteen year old Feodor III was his father’s successor. Feodor, although disabled from birth, was an accomplished scholar. His short rule showed every indication of bringing enlightenment to what was still a medieval country. Feodor founded an academy of science, reduced the severity of penal laws and introduced a liberalism into Russian affairs.
During his reign Feodor’s nineteen year old sister Sophia attended sessions of the boyar[vi] council and was consulted by her uncle Ivan Miloslavsky[vii] and Prince Vasily Galitzyne. When Feodor died on 7th May 1682, leaving no children, Sophia, who had stayed at her brother’s bedside throughout his last illness, demanded that her brother Ivan be given the imperial throne instead of the ten year old Peter, who had been elected by acclamation of the people. His mother Natalya had been made Regent during Peter’s minority.

‘This election is unjust. Peter is young and impetuous. Ivan has reached his majority. He must be the tsar.’[viii]
When this demand was refused Sophia then suggested that both brothers share the throne, but the Patriarch, who had overseen Peter’s election, refused her request

‘No, joint rule is ruinous. Let there be one tsar. It is thus pleasing to God.’[ix]
At the funeral Sophia made a public display of her all too real grief[x]. Intensely annoyed by this unmaidenly behaviour Tsarina Natasha removed her son part way through the lengthy service.

The Streltsy Revolt
Feodor’s death and the dispute about which brother was to rule was only one of the inspirations behind the Moscow Uprising[xi]. The Moscow based Streltsy Regiments[xii] revolted; partly because of an outstanding grievance of the Griboyedov Regiment, whose colonel Semyon Griboyedov was withholding half their pay and had forced them to work on Easter week[xiii]. The Griboyedov Regiment were joined by a further seventeen regiments.

Natalya’s fledgling government was supported by the old families, but none of them were capable of dealing with the uprising of the Streltsy regiments. Rumours were spread through the regiments to the effect that Feodor had been poisoned with the connivance of the new Czar’s family and the boyars. Orthodoxy and the old ways would be degraded; foreigners would rule and the Streltsy would be punished.
Certainly at least one member of the Miloslavsky family was involved in spreading the rumours, Ivan, who was keen to throw out the Naryshkins who had taken over the levers of power formerly under the control of the Miloslavsky’s. Another party to the plot was Prince Galitzyne[xiv]. The plotters needed a member of the royal family to rule through and they found her in Czarevna Sophia.

On 15th May 1682 the revolt burst into flames; two members of Sophia’s intimate circle galloped into the Streltsy quarter of Moscow crying
‘’The Naryshkins have murdered the Tsarevich Ivan! To the Kremlin! The Naryshkins will kill the whole Royal Family. To arms! Punish the traitors!’[xv]
The Streltsy erupted and converged upon a Kremlin, where the gates were wide open as the Regent and her advisers had no reason to believe that trouble was brewing. The Streltsy swept into the Kremlin and the regiment on guard abandoned their posts to join their colleagues.

Natalya displays Ivan to the Streltsy
Natalya and her son and stepson showed themselves to the soldiers from the top of the Red Staricase; she then departed and her senior adviser, Artamon Matveyev[xvi] spoke to the soldiers, further calming them. He was followed by the Patriarch and then the son of the Streltsy commander attempted to impose military discipline. The Streltsy soldiers re-erupted, charged up the staircase and threw the man onto the pikes of soldiers down in the courtyard.
This act of violence incited further violence and the soldiers ripped Matveyev from the protecting arms of the Czarina. He too was thrown down and ripped to pieces in front of the Regent and her children. The Streltsy now ran riot and surged through the Kremlin seeking victims, while Natalya, Ivan and Peter huddled in the Banqueting Hall.

The Streltsy, balked of the majority of their Naryshkin victims ran riot in the Kremlin for a second day.  On the third day they returned and threatened to kill every boyar in the palace and intimated that the Regent and the remainder of the royal family were also in danger.

The Streltsy drag Peter's uncle to his death
Devoid of any other choice Natalya was forced to give up her brother to the mob of soldiers to save her son and stepson. Ivan was given the last rites in the palace chapel. Ivan Naryshkin was tortured to death but failed to admit that he had poisoned Czar Feodor.
Finally the Streltsy blood lust was appeased and most of the remainder of the Naryshkin family escaped death. Natalya’s father was forced to become a monk at a monastery 400 miles from Moscow. The Streltsy demanded back pay[xvii], an amnesty and a triumphal column to be erected in Red Square to honour their valiant deeds. A cowed government gave in to their demands. The musketeers were now to be renamed the Palace Guard.

The Joint Czardom

Natalya Naryshkina
On 23rd May, prompted by Sophia’s agents, the Streltsy demanded that Ivan be made co-monarch with Peter; after all he was the eldest living son of Czar Alexis’ first wife, while Peter was the child of the second wife. If their demands were not met the Streltsy threatened to attack the Kremlin again. As the older boy Ivan was to be the senior Czar.
Unable to control the Streltsy the government had no choice. The disabled Ivan[xviii] was reluctant to rule, but was persuaded by Sophia to agree to attend state occasions and sometimes attend council. And Sophia’s final throw of the dice was the demand on 29th May, by the Streltsy, that the Regent should be Czarevna Sophia. The same day a decree announced the change of Regent. The two boys were enthroned on June 6th.

The Streltsy Uprising was to mark Peter for life; he hated the Kremlin and Moscow from now on; he hated the Orthodox Church and he hated that he and his mother had been left unprotected when the Streltsy revolted.
Peter was to spend the next few years of his life in the countryside outside Moscow. His arrival at the pinnacle of power in Russia would eventually see Moscow stripped of its role as the powerhouse of the country, with the creation of St Petersburg.

Natasha’s Dance – Orlando Figes, Penguin Books Ltd 2002

Russia and the Russians – Geoffrey Hosking, The Penguin Press 2001
William and Mary – John van der Kiste, Sutton Publishing 2003

Peter the Great – Robert K Massie, Abacus 1992
William and Mary – Henri & Barbara van der Zee, History Book Club 1973


[i] 25 at this time
[ii] Until 8th February 1696 he had ruled with his half-brother Ivan V
[iii] All children of Alexis’ first wife
[iv] Peter the Great - Massie
[v] Ibid
[vi] Senior Russian nobles
[vii] Her father died in 1668
[viii] Peter the Great - Massie
[ix] Ibid
[x] Hitherto female members of the Czar’s family were screened from the public by a moving canopy and were veiled. Sophia had dispensed with much of her veiling
[xi] Or Streltsy Uprising.
[xii] Pikemen and musketeers who guarded the Kremlin, acted as police or firemen as necessary; for many of them it became an inherited privilege. As members of the army were not taxed many opened businesses and forced the soldiers were used as unpaid labour. Corruption was rife and officers were known to withhold their soldier’s pay.
[xiii] One of the holiest holidays of the Orthodox calendar.
[xiv] His proposals for army reform during Feodor’s reign had earnt him the enmity of the Boyars and thus he opposed Regent Natalya’s reign because they supported it.
[xv] Peter the Great - Massie
[xvi] A former and popular commander of the Streltsy under Peter’s father
[xvii] The property of the deceased had to be auctioned off to pay the monies owing, along with the melting down of the silver in the Kremlin and a general tax on the population
[xviii] He had sight and speech problems

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Brother of the Sun King V

A Falling out Between Brothers

Louis XIV
The two brothers now fell out over Philippe’s son, an intelligent man, whom Louis was not prepared to advance. Having promised the Duc de Chartres a position in the army, calculating that Philippe would refuse to give permission for his son to take a lowly rank, Louis was stymied by his brother’s agreement. Louis then reneged on his promise and consequently the Duc de Chartres wasted his time in foolish exploits in conjunction with unsavoury companions.

Throughout her life Madame continued her hatred of her daughter-in-law; failing to empathise with the Duchesse de Chartres’ problems with her husband, who was contemptuous of her and spent as little time with her as possible. Monsieur too had no love for his daughter-in-law but, in the etiquette ridden Versailles, insisted on her precedence over her brothers. The de Chartres had six daughters and one son, despite their mutual unhappiness. In addition the Duc de Chartres had numerous illegitimate offspring.

The duke’s continuing poor behaviour infuriated his uncle, who reneged on the promises made to him, prior to the wedding. Madame complained that her husband’s boyfriends were corrupting her son
‘My son has been completely captivated by Monsieur’s favourites; since he loves women, they act as his pimps, sponge off him, gorge and guzzle with him, and drag him so deeply into debauchery that he cannot seem to get out of it; and since he knows I do not approve of his ways, he avoids me and does not like me at all.’[i]
When Louis told Philippe to control his son, Philippe publicly berated his brother for failing to give the Duc de Chartres the same honours, appointments and dignities as his brothers-in-law[ii].

‘Thereupon Monsieur fell into a rage, more from policy than from real anger, and turning upon the king asked to be informed how he should deal with a grown-up son who was given nothing better to do than kick his heels in the great gallery and forecourt of Versailles, a married man yet quite destitute.’[iii]
Louis had no intention of changing his policy vis-à-vis the duke; he was prepared to humiliate the son as he did the father. Philippe may very well have felt betrayed by Louis in this matter, as he had acquiesced in the Duc de Chartres marriage to his cousin.

The Death of Monsieur
A report for the English king gave a pen portrait of Philippe late in his life:

‘He is a good enough prince who does neither good nor ill. He loves the people who love him more than they esteem him. He is two thirds as tall as his brother….. but very fat. He wears a black wig, his nose and the rouge on his cheeks almost obliterate his face…….never has anyone loved himself more than he does……his affections do not go to women whose gallantry seems common to him, nonetheless he affects their manners…..his make-up resembles the ladies more than a general of the armies.’[iv]
Louis had recently been failing to show his brother some of the courtesies he had hithertofore granted Philippe. Monsieur had also been threatened by his confessor with damnation for his homosexual activities:

‘To this he had appended that Monsieur had best beware, for he was old, worn out by debauchery, short in the neck, fat, and to all appearance likely to die of apoplexy at any moment. These were awful words for the most voluptuous and life-loving of princes…….He grew sad, down-hearted and chattered less…..it was not to be wondered at that such heart-ache and the suffering he had endured regarding the king should have been too much for so weak a man.’[v]

Duchess de Chartres
On the 8th June 1701 June Philippe and Louis had a very public quarrel at Marly as a result of the Duc de Chartres’ ill treatment of his duchess. The Duc de Chartres had fallen in love with one of his mother’s maids of honour, Mademoiselle de Séry, and was pursuing the affair very publicly and embarrassing his wife in the process. Louis coldly reprimanded his brother
‘Monsieur, in the state he then was, needed no such excuse to lose his temper, and before long they were at it hammer and tongs. An usher, hearing the din, went in to tell the King he could be heard distinctly from the drawing room and then immediately retired. This made them lower their voices but did not stop the quarrel; and finally Monsieur flew into a rage, telling the King plainly that when M. de Chartres was married he had been promised the earth and had so far extracted no more than a governorship.’[vi]

St Cloud
Then in the evening Philippe, having returned home to Saint Cloud, suffered a stroke. Louis did not visit his brother for some hours, possibly believing that the affair was a trick to relieve tension between the two of them. Monsieur died the following day; Louis was upset,
‘He may have blamed himself for precipitating Monsieur’s death by that morning’s quarrel; he may also have felt some disquiet, since Monsieur was the younger by two years and had appeared quite as healthy as himself, if not more so.’[vii]
Philippe had been unwell for a long time; during the 1680s he had suffered several serious fever bouts; in the 1690s Philippe became a victim of gout. Having always had a prodigious appetite Philippe now became seriously overweight; Saint-Simon drew a merciless pen portrait when he was newly arrived at court

‘He was a pot-bellied little man propped up on heels like stilts; gotten up like a woman with rings, bracelets, and jewels everywhere; a long wig, black and powdered, spread out in front; ribbons wherever he could put them; and exuding perfumes of all kinds……With more vivacity than intelligence and entirely without learning, although with an extensive knowledge of genealogies, births and marriages, he was capable of nothing. No one so soft of body and mind.’[viii]
Saint-Simon only saw the Monsieur who had been ground down by his brother’s mistrust and the deliberate exclusion from education forced upon him by his mother and Cardinal Mazarin.

The widowed Duchesse d'Orleans
Madame was upset by her husband’s death; they had recently reconciled themselves to friendship.
‘This comes to your Grace from the most unfortunate of creatures; Monsieur has suffered a stroke last evening at ten o’clock. He is in the throes of death and I….in the most wretched state in the world.’[ix]
When he died the sale of Philippe’s personal jewellery raised over one million livres. He also left a huge personal fortune. Much of his wealth was in real estate, which turned out to be a shrewd investment, leaving his descendants richer than the future king’s brothers.

Philippe’s enormous expenditure was rents, a fifth of the monies expended were for the construction of canals and buildings. Monsieur had also had his income from his brother reduced in 1699 and now Philippe had to pay for his household out of his own rents and income from his estates, not to mention pensions to his servants when they retired.
It is uncertain as to how much of the accumulation of wealth was driven by Monsieur; certainly his contemporaries believed he had no interest in his finances. But Philippe was very acquisitive and if his Superintendant of Finances and his council of advisers did nothing more than follow Monsieur in this, they serve the Orléans family well.

Brotherly Division and Suspicion
Louis had always been taught to treat his brother as a subject by his mother and the Fronde taught him to treat his brother with suspicion. Louis seems to have equated his brother’s actions with his uncle’s frequent rebellions against the crown; a suspicion that seems to have been ill-founded and suspicions that must have caused Philippe pain. Louis’ repression of all Philippe’s attempts to serve France can only have added to the breach between the two brothers and increased Philippe’s sense of isolation from his immediate family.

Saint-Simon tells us that Philippe got on well with his brother
‘What is more, he was truly devoted to the king and had been used to treating him in private with brotherly freedom and to receiving the like, together with all manners of kindness and tokens of love – and of respect too, always provided that there was no danger of giving him any importance.’[x]
Louis did love his brother and closest relative, but he also seems to have found pleasure in humiliating others and possibly particular pleasure in humiliating his brother. This may have been a partly a result of his mother’s encouragement at an early age to consider his brother as his subordinate and his mother’s encouragement of Philippe’s feminine side, as Louis was encouraged to be masculine.

Brother to the Sun King – Nancy Nichols Barker, 1989 The John Hopkins University Press

Louis XIV – Vincent Cronin, The Reprint Society London 1965
A Woman’s Life at the Court of the Sun King – Elborg Forster, John Hopkins Paperbacks 1997

Memoirs Duc de Saint-Simon Vol 1 Edited Lucy Norton, Prion Books 2000
The Affair of the Poisons – Anne Somerset, Weidenfeld and Nicholson 2003

Louis XIV – John B Wolf, Panther History 1970

[i] A Woman’s Life in the Court of the Sun King - Forster
[ii] The bastard sons of Louis
[iii] Memoirs, Vol 1 - Norton
[iv] Louis XIV - Wolf
[v] Memoirs, Vol 1 - Norton
[vi] Ibid
[vii] Ibid
[viii] Brother to the Sun King - Barker
[ix] A Woman’s Life in the Court of the Sun King - Forster
[x] Memoirs, Vol 1 - Norton