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French Monarch Louis XIV known as "Sun King" reign from 1643 to 1715. The exhibition is dedicate to the greatest medallic project that were done during his reign.
In 1662, Louis XIV's minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert ask artists to create a series of medals commemorating the triumph of the king. The result is an amazing collaborative showing the man who dominated Europe for nearly 60 years.
The display explores the background to the medallic history’s production, introducing some of the key people involved in its design and execution, including Colbert, artist and sculptor Jean Warin and authors Charles Perrault (best known today for his collection of fairy tales) and Jean Racine. The display uses a selection of the British Museum’s outstanding collection of medals produced during this period to tell this fascinating story – from the setting up of a ‘Little Academy’ (a committee established in 1663 to advise Louis on commemorating his reign) to the process of creation and production, and how Louis was represented.
Finally, a selection of satirical medals produced by Louis’ enemies in Germany and England represent responses to his medallic history.