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The hall of Mirrors

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The War Salon

Mansart started to build the Salon de la Guerre (War Room) in 1678. The decoration, completed by Le Brun in 1686, glorifies the military victories that led to the Peace of Nijmegen. The walls are covered with marble panels decorated with six trophies and gilded bronze carvings. The wall on the Apollo Room side has an oval plasterwork bas-relief representing Louis XIV on horseback trampling over his enemies. This masterpiece by Coysevox is surmounted by two gilded Renommées supported by two prisoners in chains. Above, in the bas-relief that eclipses the opening of a false fireplace, Clio is writing the history of the King for the future. The ceiling, which was painted by Le Brun, represents France in the centre, armed and sitting on a cloud, surrounded by Victories. A portrait of Louis XIV decorates her shield. The ceiling panels portray the king’s three conquered enemies: Germany, kneeling, with an eagle; Spain, threatening, with a roaring lion and Holland, upside down on a lion. The fourth panel represents Bellone, Goddess of war, enraged between Rebellion and Discord.