Results 1-7of 7 Reviews
Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom
October 27, 2010
From journal A touch of Paris
July 3, 2000
From journal My 2 brief trips to Paris
CA1 1LA, England, United Kingdom
January 5, 2011
From journal The most beautiful city in the world
by Smitha Guru
October 25, 2004
From journal Paris Sojourn
by Wildcat Dianne
July 13, 2003
La Place de la Concorde is the big square that anchors the other end of Les Champs Elysees in central Paris. It was made famous by Charles Dickens in his novel A Tale of Two Cities. During the French Revolution, Place de la Concorde was known as Place du Revolution and was the place where the famous Guillotine stood during the French Revolution and executed thousands of French aristocrats during the bloody Terror.
I had just read A Tale of Two Cities in my senior English class that year, and I was happy to go to the place of such bloodshed. I could hear the sound of the carriages on the cobblestone paths carrying its victims to their deaths, the sound of the guillotine sliding down to behead someone, the sound of the cheers of the crowds, and one could visualize Madame LaFarge sitting in the front row knitting the names of the victims into her work.
Place de la Concorde has two fountains at each end of the square. It also has the 3,300-year-old Luxor obelisk that was given to Charles IX in 1829 by Mehmet Ali of Egypt. The obelisk has hyrogliphics and drawings all over it, and it dominates Place de la Concorde.
It is free to see Place de la Concorde and if you are a Dickens fan or a French Revolution aficionado, a visit to Place de la Concorde is highly recommended.
From journal "La Ville Lumiere (The City of Lights)"
April 25, 2003
Here you can see the fascinating Obelisk, one of two that fronted an Egyptian temple in Thebes, later called Luxor, from the 13th centurt B.C. Its arduous, lengthy journey from the original site is fittingly depicted in gold leaf pictographs on sides above its base. The hieroglyphic stele was finally capped with matching gold leaf on its bronze pyramid top in 1998, replacing a cap that had been stolen in the sixth century B.C. Nightly, laser rays illuminate this cap to afford a spectacular sight. The mate of this Parisian obelisk is still at Luxor, whereas this red granite monument, a "gift" of friendship authorized by the Egyptian viceroy in 1831, was removed and transported by a French naval engineer in a process that took five years, culminating in its unveiling in October 1836.
What is so enthralling is to see the detail of the Obelisk’s journey on the Obelisk itself. Via the aptly named ship Louxor, that journey from Egypt to Paris extended from December 1831 to December 1833, with a route that went from Alexandria to Toulon to Cherbourg to the Seine near the Place de la Concorde.The photographs in this entry display some of the monument’s sides illustrating this complex transfer. The engineer, Jean Baptiste Apollinaire Lebas (great Revolutionary name!), was amply rewarded with cash and a medallion by King Charles X.
Definitely downplayed, a plaque on the side of the Obelisk that faces the Arc marks the over 1300 heads cleaved by the guillotine that its inventor devised as a "kinder", "quicker", "cleaner" way to execute people than other medieval methods of prolonged agony still in use just before his invention.
Today, the Obelisk stands in this lovely, octagonal square, flanked by two fountains by Jacob Ignaz Hittorff, the German architect who designed the square as we see it and created the eight female statues representing the largest French cities of his time that adorn the square’s periphery. The Hotel de la Marine and the Hotel Crillon on this prestigious square are architectural feats themselves, both designed by the square’s first architect, Louis XIV’s architect, Jaques-Ange Gabriel.
This expansive, historic spot is conveniently reached by taking the RER 3 to Champs Elysses or Metro to Concorde.
From journal Striking Paris-Outdoor Artistry, Symmetrical City
Glen Mills, Pennsylvania
November 8, 2004
For a sheer sense of open space in the middle of a bustling megapolis, from the Obelisk of Luxor, a pink granite monolith in the center, you can see a mile up the Champs-Elysees and a mile through the Jardin des Tuileries to the Musee du Louvre. La Madeline is a half-mile away on Rue Royale, and the Assemblée Nationale is another half-mile across the river Seine.
From journal The City of Lights