Aulica Coll. No 12 - Les chasses de Louis XVI. Splendeur et ruine des plaisirs de Sa Majesté (1774-1799)

Henri Pinoteau, Les chasses de Louis XVI. Splendeur et ruine des plaisirs de Sa Majesté (1774-1799), joint publication Centre de recherche du château de Versailles / Presses universitaires de Rennes (“Histoire” collection, “Aulica. L’Univers de la cour” series), March 2020, 16,5 × 24 cm, 286 pages, 16 colour plates, index, €25 (ISBN: 978-2-7535-7938-5).


Louis XVI perfectly illustrates the well-known link between the Bourbons and hunting. He inherited from his ancestors a world devoted to his entertainment, which underwent significant changes during his reign. Comprising numerous hunting companies, a large and diversified staff, dogs and horses, buildings and forests, this world, which controlled even the right to hunt, is presented here in its entirety as it changed under Louis XVI, in particular when he was confronted with the Revolution. Far from being immutable, this world, which touched both the court and the royal domains, was subject to the desires of the sovereign, the financial constraints at the end of the Ancien Régime and the revolutionary events. Its fate was linked as much to the king’s decisions as to legislative and institutional upheavals and popular discontent. This book aims to understand what became of the various elements of this world, constructed over several centuries by and for the king, and demolished in a few years while leaving traces that are still visible today.

Henri Pinoteau, archivist, palaeographer and graduate of the Institut national du patrimoine, is heritage curator at the Archives nationales.


Editions Presses universitaires de Rennes

Book review

Read Élias Burgel’s review published in the Revue d’histoire moderne et contemporaine, 4/2017 (n°64-4) (subscription or pay-per-view access on

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