Louis XIV was only four years old at the time when he became king. Cardinal Mazarin became his Chief Minister, i.e. the prime minister of France.
On this day in 1643, Louis XIV became the French king after his father – King Louis XIII – died from an illness at the age of 42 years. Due to his father’s early death, little Louis XIV was only four years old at the time when he became king. Louis XIV then ruled for as many as 72 years and 110 days, which probably made him the longest-reigning king in all of European history in his time.
Of course, four-year-old Louis XIV could not rule France by himself. His mother, the queen-widow Anna, who was the daughter of the King of Spain, became the regent. She entrusted great power to the famous Cardinal Mazarin, who became Chief Minister i.e. the prime minister of France. It is interesting that Cardinal Mazarin was actually an Italian born under the name of Giulio Raimondo Mazzarino. He became an influential associate of Cardinal Richelieu in France and eventually took over a function similar to the one Richelieu held earlier (that of Chief Minister of the King of France).