Before the French Revolution
· If Louis XIV's reign had been distinguished by extravagance, Louis XV's was characterized by carelessness.
· Old Regime's dysfunction.
· He preferred to satisfy his mistresses rather than his kingdom
· But he did pull himself away from the boudoir long enough to get France into some serious financial scrapes.
· Under his reign, France was involved in the War of Polish Succession (1733-38), the War of Austrian Succession (1740-48) and the Seven Years' War (1756-63). France lost valuable land during these battles, and the Seven Years' War nearly drained the treasury.
· No one had much confidence in Louis XVI's ability to lead France, much less pull it out of debt