Louis XIV of France stands alone as the monarch of the longest reign in European history, and is one of the most notable rulers in European history. Louis' reign is often regarded as the epitome of totalitarianism, as his precise rule was largely controlled by his own hand. Despite the high possibilities for problems due to Louis' very personally-involved style of kingship, France attained the rank of one of the most powerful countries in Europe in the time of Louis XIV. Louis did his best to pull France out of the adversity of the middle ages, and arguably in every way, he succeeded. Under Louis, lifestyle in France reached perhaps the highest, and most luxurious standards.