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Subscribe to Versailles District News! Click the link below and subscribe to receive news and alerts directly from your ISP district. Sign up here for the latest news and updates from Indiana State Police. Text Only Version of IN. State of Indiana – All rights reserved. The work was carried out between 1672 and 1677.
Water jets spurting from the animals mouths were conceived to give the impression of speech between the creatures. Between 1672 and 1677 Le Nôtre redesigned the labyrinth to feature thirty-nine fountains that depicted stories from Aesop’s Fables. It was from these plaques, Louis XIV’s son learned to read. Once completed in 1677 the labyrinth contained thirty-nine fountains with 333 painted metal animal sculptures. 253 pumps, some of which worked at a distance of three-quarters of a mile.
The layout of the maze was unusual, as there was no central goal, and, despite the five metre high hedges, allowed glimpses ahead. He continues: “At every turn you see a fountain decorated with delicate rocaille, and representing very simply a fable, the subject of which is indicated by a four-line inscription in gold letters on a bronze plate. At each end of a path,” he wrote, “and wherever they cross, there are fountains, so arranged that in whatever place one finds oneself, one sees always three or four and often six or seven of them at once. The basins of these fountains, all different in figure and design, are enriched with fine rock-work and rare shells and for ornamentation have different animals who represent the most charming fables of Aesop. Isaac Benserade for each fable.
It was first published in 1675, then reprinted in 1677 with engravings by Sébastien Leclerc. The small, pocket-sized books were richly bound in red Morocco leather with stamped gilt decoration. The labyrinth contributed greatly to the wonder that the Gardens of Versailles instilled in visitors and diplomats from abroad. An illustrated guide printed in Amsterdam in 1682 praised Le Nôtre’s work saying, “Amongst all these works there is nothing more admirable and praiseworthy than the Royal Garden at Versailles, and, in it, the Labyrinth The Turnings and Windings, edged on both sides with green cropt hedges, are not at all tedious, by reason that at every hand there are figures and water-works representing the mysterious and instructive fables of Aesop”. 1676 as a musician to the royal court of Versailles, knew the labyrinth.
One enters the labyrinth and, after descending to the ducks and dog comes up again next to Bacchus. The piece from his Fourth Book, titled Le Labyrinthe, in which after roaming through various keys, touching diverse dissonances, and underlining, first with sombre tones and later with lively and sprightly ones, the uncertainty of a man lost in a labyrinth, the composer manages happily to find the way out at last and finishes with a graceful and natural sounding Chaconne. Aesop in his fables teaches the path. Yes, I can now close my eyes and laugh: with this thread I’ll find my way.
Love, that slender thread might get you lost: the slightest shock could break it. Citing repair and maintenance costs, Louis XVI ordered the labyrinth destroyed in 1778. In its place, an arboretum of exotic trees was planted as an English-styled garden. In the reserve collections of the Musée national des châteaux de Versailles et de Trianon, there remain only thirty-four fragments of the fountains, as well as the statues of L’Amour and Aesop. Versailles: delineated in French and English.