Louvois, François Michel Le Tellier, marquis de
Louvois, François Michel Le Tellier, marquis de(fräNswä` mēshĕl` lə tĕlyā` märkē` də lo͞ovwä`), 1641–91, French statesman, minister during the reign of King Louis XIV. After 1654 he was associated in office with his father, Michel Le TellierLe Tellier, Michel
, 1603–85, French statesman. A minister of state under Cardinal Mazarin, he became war minister in 1643. He later shared his duties with his son, the marquis de Louvois. At the time of his death he was chancellor of France.
..... Click the link for more information. , and from 1666 he functioned as war minister, officially replacing his father in 1677. His father shared in the reforms credited to Louvois. Among these reforms were the creation of an efficient provisioning system, the introduction of the bayonet and the flintlock rifle, the close coordination of the artillery and the corps of engineers with the infantry, the creation of grades to which officers might be promoted without purchasing their commissions, and the establishment of a fixed rate of pay. By these measures the French army became the most powerful military force in Europe. After the death of Jean Baptiste ColbertColbert, Jean Baptiste
, 1619–83, French statesman. The son of a draper, he was trained in business and was hired by Cardinal Mazarin to look after his financial affairs.
..... Click the link for more information. (1683), Louvois became the most influential of Louis's ministers. He supported the revocation of the Edict of Nantes (see Nantes, Edict ofNantes, Edict of,
1598, decree promulgated at Nantes by King Henry IV to restore internal peace in France, which had been torn by the Wars of Religion; the edict defined the rights of the French Protestants (see Huguenots).
..... Click the link for more information. ) and was largely responsible for the brutal enforcement of that measure. Louvois also was instrumental in the shaping of Louis's aggressive policies. The devastation of the Palatinate (1689) by the French army under his orders during the War of the Grand Alliance earned him condemnation throughout Europe.