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Place de la Bastille

The Bastille Prison - Metro : Bastille
bastille prison
France’s most famous prison has not existed since the revolution of 1789, when royal power, and the tyrannical values it had come to embody, was overturned. The revolutionaries took it upon themselves to destroy this prison, symbolising to those at the time the cruelty of the royal regime since the reign of Louis XIII. Interestingly though, it housed only 7 prisoners on the day of its destruction. That, alas, didn’t dissuade the sans-culottes from taking the head of its governor, marching it around the city on the end of a stake. The heavy steel keys of the Bastille can be found today in the Museum Carnavalet, and a good portion of its stone walls went towards building the Pont de la Concorde. In place of the prison today stands an enormous bronze column named the July Column, erected by Louis-Phillipe following the fall of Charles X in memory of those who died during the revolution and as a representation of the freedom found as a result. Atop the column stands the Genius of Liberty, wings open, representing a freedom that flies away, breaking the chains of oppression. The new Bastille Opéra was inaugurated for the bicentenary of the revolution of 1989, the ultra-modern theatre become Paris’ second.



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