Louis XI was the King of France from 1461 - 1483 and is referred to as one of the first Kings of modern France. Louis XI was a very important figure in the history of France in that he started the move toward royal absolutism. Rather than having to deal with rich patriarchs and wealthy families, Louis XI destroyed all enemies in his path on the road to absolute power. Louis XI believed that only a strong king could provide a stable France and he employed any means necessary to achieve this goal.
Louis XI was given many nicknames due to his ability to deceive and conspire against those who he needed to remove from power. Some of these nicknames were the Prudent, the Cunning, and the Universal Spider. These nicknames all refer to Louis XI's cunning and well known ability to plot and scheme.