29 January 2024


Zoom lecture

The Regency in Paris (1715-1723).

The Dawn of Enlightenment.

A lecture based on the exhibition at the Musée Carnavalet, Paris (until 25 February 2024)

With Mariam Habibi

Augustin Oudart Justinat, Portrait of Louis XV, 1717
Augustin Oudart Justinat, Portrait of Louis XV, 1717

Louis XIV died on the first of September 1715 in Versailles leaving behind a France languishing in debt and as heir his great-grandson, Louis XV, a child of five, too young to reign. On 2 September, the duc Philippe d’Orléans (1674-1723), the young King’s uncle, assumed the Regency of the kingdom. The court, the government, the nobility and the young King abandoned Versailles for Paris.


In this crucial transitional period between the death of the Great King and that of the Regent in 1723 everything seems to have changed in Paris. The Regent’s residence at the Palais-Royal now became the center of power and fashion. A flurry of monumental mansions were built by the nobility, particularly on the Left Bank opposite the Tuileries palace, leading to a revolution in interior decoration and furniture styles. Theater, luxury and generally the conspicuous consumption of all expensive pleasures overtook Paris society, newly enriched by the founding of a stock exchange, a royal bank, paper notes and a company (compagnie des Indes) to exploit the new crown colony in America – Louisiana – whose capital, New Orleans, was named after the Regent.


Our lecture will examine the politics and culture of this fast-moving era which also witnessed the emergence of some the key intellectual and cultural figures of the French Enlightenment: Voltaire, Marivaux, Montesquieu, Law, Watteau…

You will be receiving the recording via WeTransfer as soon as we receive notification of your purchase


The Musée Carnavalet

The Musée Carnavalet is the museum of the history of Paris.

It was founded in 1866 during the often destructive modernization of Paris launched by Napoleon III and Baron Haussmann

to preserve - paradoxically – elements of Parisian architecture and historic interiors saved from demolition.


The museum re-opened in 2021 after five years of extensive renovations with vastly expanded premises for its collections and an entirely new underground section.


Recorded Zoom lectures on the meseum's collection

with Chris Boïcos:


Musée Carnavalet
Musée Carnavalet

Paris under the Bourbons 1 

in the collections of Musée Carnavalet


Paris under the Bourbons 2

in the collections of Musée Carnavalet

Paris and the French Revolution, 1789-1799

In the Collections of Musée Carnavalet