Ray – Pont des Arts

6:48 AM – Ray, who lives near Sydney (Australia), on a business trip to France, took advantage of this Saturday morning to do a visit of Paris by running. Ray is an experienced coach who trains high-level athletes (See Ray’s web site). It is thus with a good pace that we went to discover the city.

Having run on the left bank, we crossed the river Seine by the “Ile de la Cité” then joined the Palais Royal (Royal Palace), very quiet in the morning.

Ray – Garden of the Palais Royal

The Palais Royal was built by Cardinal de Richelieu in 1628. The Palace was then called the Cardinal Palace. After the death of Richelieu, the Regent Anne of Austria settled down there. His sons, king Louis XIV and his brother spent their first years there. The period of “La Fronde” (The sling) where the parliament and the noble persons dispute the royal authority, brought the king Louis XIV outside Paris. The Palace of Versailles was one of its biggest creations outside the capital.

Palais Royal and Palais Royal’s garden

After the Sling and the departure of young king Louis XIV, the Royal Palace witnessed numerous historic periods, the feasts of the Regency at the beginning of the 18th century for example, the debates of ideas and the start of the Revolution of 1789, then with the 19th century, the world of Cafés, houses of games and of prostitution (games and soliciting were forbidden in the 1830s)…

Do you remember of the small cannon of the Palais Royal about which we had spoken here?

More recently, in 1986, the Palais Royal exhibited a work of modern Art, “Les Deux plateaux” of the artist Daniel Buren, so called the “Columns of Buren”:

Ray – Palais Royal – Columns of Buren

These columns aroused an important debate within the population and in the media. The work of Art was nearly demolished.

Very recently, as seen at the left of the photo above, quite wooden, a new theater appeared, the “Théâtre de l’Ephémère” (Short-lived Theatre), which replaces temporarily the nice building of “La Comédie Française”, currently being renovated.

Merci Ray !

The route of the tour:

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