Travel

Place des Vosges – the legacy of French sovereigns

In this article we will tell you about one of the most beautiful places in Paris what was called Place des Vosges by the legendary Emperor Napoleon.

Formerly these lands belonged to famous religious Order of Knights Templars, they were presented monks by the King Louis the Ninth, had the name “Marais” (“marsh”), because there was nothing more except marshes.

The thirteenth century was a time when the Templars had made reclamation works and drained the local marshes to begin construction of their facilities at these territories. But the name “Marais” remains in our time.

Monastic order in those days had reached an enormous power and its political and military influence had been stronger than French monarchy. Of course, the king could not like this. Envying the Templar Knights, the King decided to make his residence here and transported the court to this place in the fourteenth century. Later many members of the royal family became the owners of a large number of luxury apartments at the area.

One of the most famous palaces in the present Place des Vosges was Tournelle Palace, which had been the first one occupied by conquerors from the British Isles during the Hundred Years’ War. After the end of the war inhabitants of the palace became Henry II and Maria de Medici. Though, they were the last. In the mid-sixteenth century, Henry II was killed during a tournament and the Queen had decided to destroy the palace and move to Louvre. However, the place was not empty; a large horse market had been organized here very quickly.

During the time of power of King Henry IV Royal Square was founded. And its name has being retained until 1799. But, the Square could not be suitable for such great status without proper buildings. That’s why the architects were ordered to construct magnificent palaces for court aristocracy. Unfortunately, the king was not able to contemplate all this beauty himself, he had died from the hands of a Catholic fanatic François Ravaillac. An already his successor Louis XIII took the main celebrations to mark the opening of the Square in 1610, connected with his engagement with the princess Anne of Austria.

Parisians liked Place des Vosges from the beginning, and many wealthy people wanted to have Paris real estate in this place, what was considered very prestigious. For example, one of the most famous inhabitants of this area was the legendary Cardinal Richelieu. He lived in a mansion number 21. It is noteworthy that under the regency of Richelieu, French daredevils preferred to organize their duels on this area.

Later at different times such famous people as Victor Hugo, Alphonse Daudet and Theophile Gautier lived here.

From an architectural perspective Place des Vosges is also very interesting, because all buildings had new color for Paris of those times. The mansions were performed in the same style, what had created a whole architectural ensemble. And only Palace of King and Queen has the uniqueness.

Place des Vosges is very popular tourist destination for a long time. Here you can always find numerous excursions at any time of year.

We wish you to enjoy the splendor of this place in Paris!