The Ile de la Cite is the cradle of Parisian civilization. It was here when the Parisian tribe lived. The Romans, led by Caesar’s lieutenant Labenius, conquered the Parisii in 52 AD and set up camp.
The city was given the name Lutecia, from the Latin lutum meaning “mud”. During the barbarian invasion, Lutecia’s inhabitants, galvanized by the young Sainte Genevieve, took refuge on the easily defended Ile de la Cite.
Clovis, king of the Francs and defeater of the Romans, made the island his capital. It stayed the area’s center of activity throughout the Middle ages.