Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Place de la République, Paris

La Place de la République is on the intersection of the boundaries of the 3eme, 10eme and 11eme arrondissements in Paris. Created in the early 19th century, it was re-imagined as part of Baron Haussmann's great project to rebuild Paris in the mid 19th century. The métro station République is underneath the square and the Caserne de Vérines (the Republican Guard barracks) dominates one side.

The monument to the Third Republic with the Caserne de Vérines behind it.
 In the centre stands a monument commemorating the creation of the Third Republic, erected in 1883.

A bronze lion at the base of the statue.
Around the base of the statue are fixed a number of bronze reliefs, commemorating various dates of significance in the history of the French Republic.

Here is a random selection:

29 July 1830 -- the final day of the three day riot in Paris known as the Second French Revolution, which toppled the constitutional monarchy of King Charles X and replaced him with his distant cousin Louis-Philippe, Duke of Orleans.
13 Prairial An 2 -- a date from the Revolutionary calendar that equates to 1 June 1794. This relief memorialises the sinking of the French ship Vengeur du Peuple in the largest maritime battle between the French and British during the French Revolutionary Wars. The British navy attacked to prevent a convoy of ships carrying grain from reaching France. Losses on the French side were very heavy, but the convoy got through with the vital food supply.
20 September 1792 -- the Battle of Valmy, which was the first significant victory by the French in the Revolutionary Wars. Thanks to a lucky combination of bad weather and superior artillery, the French were able to prevent the Prussians from advancing on Paris.
11 July 1792 -- The French Legislative Assembly gives itself emergency powers in order to counter the threat of the Prussians massing on the border.
It is very clear from these panels that any significant historic event involves a great deal of of arm waving and dramatic gesture. I'll try to remember to look out for that so I will recognise great events if by chance I stumble across them as they happen.
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Botany Outing: There is a botany walk on Sunday 13 April to see Snakeshead Fritillaries at Véron. Meet at 14.30 in Place de l'eglise in Savigny en Véron. Organised by the Association de Botanique et de Mycologie de Sainte Maure de Touraine.
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Au jardin hier: Our asparagus is up, which seems to me to be about a month early. The broad beans are flowering, even though they are only about 15cm high.

3 comments:

  1. "...so I will recognise great events if by chance I stumble across them..."
    Susan, do I detect a touch of synicism there?
    Great plaques tho'... even with the arm and flag waving.

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  2. If the fritillaries in Véron are anything like the ones here, they'll almost all be over. Same here with the broad beans - about a foot high and covered in flowers. P.

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  3. Whrn last in la Place de la République, it was swarming with 2CVs during the 50th anniversary celebrations - now I wish I'd had a better look at the monument! P.

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