It was after the devastating
storms in 1990 that a huge scheme to restore the park of Versailles was agreed. Its implementation was entrusted to Pierre-Andre Lablaude, chief architect of the Historic Monuments department; the challenge he was set was to reinstate
the original layout as closely as possible. This ambitious undertaking required considerable research to rediscover both the general principles underlying the landscaping and the details of the various decorative, botanical or hydraulic innovations, at the successive
periods during which these famous gardens were created. Here the author retraces the history of the gardens of Versailles, from the small estate acquired by Louis XIII for hunting up to the present-day park which attracts crowds of visitors
and tourists, by way of that splendid, completely unique period when Versailles became the extraordinary symbol of the Sun King. Trees planted or transplanted, pools and canals, sculptures and bosquets, everything was...