One of the most famous burial places in the world is Parisian Pere Lachaise cemetery, located on the territory of the 20th administrative district of the French capital. Officially it is called the Eastern cemetery, which is directly related to its location in the eastern part of Paris. This large green tract of land is the biggest in the city and takes about fifty acres and it’s a huge open-air museum of gravestones.
Since the Middle Ages on the place of the modern cemetery location were residential areas, in which in different time intervals the representatives of the poor Parisian society, Jesuit monks, the business elite of the city lived. And only in the early nineteenth century the authorities of Paris have allocated these lands for disposal and sold them to private owners.
In the first time the new cemetery did not have, if we may say so, a demand, and new graves appeared here very seldom. To remedy the situation the owners of the Pere-Lachaise on the initiative of Nicolas Freshot (with permission from the authorities) reburied the remains of the great French Molière and La Fontaine here. As a result, at the end of the first quarter of the 19th century the number of local “residents” (the graves) had increased to more than 33 thousand. Today in the cemetery more than 300 thousand people are buried, including many of the legendary sons and daughters of France.
A kind of sight of the cemetery Pere Lachaise is the Wall of Communards. Near it 147 members of the Paris Commune were shot by soldiers in 1871.
At the cemetery you can find the graves of famous people, such as Honore de Balzac, Henri Barbusse, Guillaume Apollinaire, Vincenzo Bellini, Pierre Beaumarchais, Isadora Duncan, Eugene Delacroix, Yves Montand, Jim Morrison, Jean-Baptiste Moliere, Edith Piaf, Nikolai Turgenev Frederic Chopin and many others.
The Pere Lachaise was marked in the modern cinema, some scenes of the movie “Paris, I Love You” (Paris, je t’aime) were shot here.