Wars of Louis XIV
King Louis XIV of France led several armed conflicts during his reign between 1661 and 1715. There were four major wars and numerous smaller conflicts. First there was the War of Devolution in 1667/1668 in which France was fighting against Spain for the Spanish posessions in the Spanish Netherlands. Second there was the Dutch War (1672-1678), a French attempt to conquer the United Provinces of the Netherlands, which turned into a major European War in 1674. Some years later this was followed by the War of the Grand Alliance (1688-1697) in which once again almost all great European states were involved in fighting back French expansion. The last conflict was the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1714). In this war, France and Austria both fought to get the bigger part of the Spanish empire after the death of King Charles II.This war put the Bourbon King Philip V in power at the concession to the Austrian Hapsburg King Leopold I that the two monarchies would not join in an union. This war while seeing the decline of the Spanish empire in regional affairs, and its alignment with France, also saw the rise of Prussia as the strongest of the German provinces.