Cardinal Mazarin, who ruled from 1643 on behalf of the Queen Regent Anne of Austria, was Louis XIV's godfather. He was in charge of the future King's education, and exerted a considerable influence on his pupil, handing on his love for the arts and introducing him very early on to military, political and diplomatic affairs. He brought the young King into the Council of State in 1650. Louis XIV allowed Mazarin to conduct the affairs of the State until his death in 1661, when he decided to rule and reign by himself. Fifty years of royal absolutism during which Louis XIV carried out his "job as a King". He never had a chief minister, a prince of royal blood or a cardinal at the High Council.
From early on in his reign, under Mazarin's advice, Louis XIV appointed Colbert as Intendant of Finance, and then as Controller-General of Finances. Regarded as a highly skilful administrator, he was in charge of the development of trade, industry, the Royal Navy, the urban development of Paris and the advance of science. He was in permanent contact with the King, and remained one of his most trusted advisors.
Louis XIV kept Michel Le Tellier in office, who had been appointed in 1643 Secretary of State for War and Minister of State by Mazarin. Together with his son, Louvois, who worked with him and was his successor, he was the true architect of the royal army and the architect of major reforms.
These four ministers would leave their mark on the reign of the Sun King. Other advisors also distinguished themselves in the King's service: the Marquis of Vauban, a brilliant engineer, Turenne, known as "the greatest military commander before Napoleon", Hughes de Lionne, dubbed by Saint-Simon as "the greatest minister of the reign".