Orléans, Duke of

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Orléans, Duke of


(Philippe II D’Orléans). Born Aug. 2, 1674, in Saint Cloud; died Dec. 2, 1723, in Versailles. Regent of France (1715–23) for Louis XV. Duke of Chartres.

Orléans secured the regency with the help of the Parisian parliament, contrary to the will of Louis XIV. At the very beginning of his regency he restored a number of parliamentary rights that Louis XIV had taken away; however, in 1718 he withdrew the concessions he had made. Originally, Orléans gave the court aristocracy a dominant rule in running the government: in 1715 he abolished the offices of the state secretaries (ministers) and replaced them with councils, including military, naval, financial, and foreign affairs councils. In 1718 the councils were abolished, with the exception of the naval council, and the state secretaries were restored.

A plot against the life of Orléans was discovered in 1718, the leading role in which was played by the Spanish ambassador, the Prince of Cellamare; its purpose was to make the Spanish king Philip V the regent for Louis XV.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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