Jean-Baptiste Colbert, French statesman

Jean-Baptiste Colbert, French statesman

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Credit: COLLECTION ABECASIS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Jean-Baptiste Colbert (1619-1683). 1868 illustration of the French economic statesman Jean-Baptiste Colbert. Colbert was appointed comptroller general of finances (1665) by King Louis XIV. He scaled down public debt, successfully increasing French exports in exchange for precious metals, a policy known as mercantilism. He encouraged the growth of industry, oversaw the construction of shipyards, arsenals and harbours, and began the construction of a large navy. He also patronized the arts and sciences, founding the Paris Observatory and the Academy of Sciences. He had to raise taxes to fund the wars waged by Louis XIV, causing Colbert great unpopularity.

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Keywords: 1600s, 17th century, 1800s, 1868, 19th century, academy of sciences, adult, artwork, black and white, black-and-white, caucasian, comptroller general, controller, economic, economics, european, finance, finances, founder, french, government, head and shoulders, historical, history, human, illustration, industry, jean baptiste, jean-baptiste colbert, louis 14th, louis xiv, male, man, mercantilism, monochrome, one person, paris observatory, people, politician, politics, portrait, public dept, statesman, surname c, white

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