Louis XIV and Peter the Great Both Louis XIV and Peter the Great were famous rulers of the late 17th- early 18th Centuries. Both took the throne at a young age and both had many strengths and weaknesses. Louis XIV had many strengths during his reign as ruler of France. Appointing Jean Baptiste Colbert as his minister of finance made some of his greatest strengths and accomplishments. One strength was that of mercantilism, which is an economic theory under which a country increases its wealth by exporting more goods than it imports. By accomplishing this, Louis XIV made himself and France very wealthy. More wealth was made when a balance of trade brought more gold and silver into France. A high tax was placed on imports and that also earned money. Soon, France became economically strong and the most powerful country in Europe. France also led Europe in the arts because of Louis XIV.
He always demanded opera and made it popular. He was also the principal patron of many famous artists, and brought their work into Versailles. His palace housed many people, including 1,000 nobles and their 4,000 servants in the palace's 226 rooms. Another 5,000 servants were housed in nearby annexes.
In addition to his strengths, Louis XIV had weaknesses. After Colbert died, Louis made one mistake that undid all of his work. He revoked Edict of Nantes who protected the religious freedom of the Huguenots. Instead of being imprisoned, more than 200,000 Huguenots fled from France. The country lost many of its skilled workers and business leaders. Louis XIV also fought many costly wars that caused his people great suffering. Many of the wars left France on the brink of bankruptcy.
Peter the Great had many strengths, but his best was he modernized Russia.