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Versailles: Decorative relief sculpture, base of plinth
Town and château in France, 20 km south-west of Paris. A hunting-lodge built for King Louis XIII in 1623 was rebuilt with extensive gardens from 1631. Under King Louis XIV it became the main royal residence and the seat of the French government from 1682. The château was enlarged in two main phases, first by Louis Le Vau from 1668, then, from 1678, by Jules Hardouin Mansart. The interior decorations were carried out under the supervision of the Premier Peintre du Roi, Charles Le Brun. Versailles was also the meeting place of States-General in 1783; scene of several treaty signings; German headquarters 1870-1871; and seat of French government 1871-1879. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site (named Palace and Park of Versailles).