Place de la Bastille, Paris
1 Boulevard Beaumarchais, 75004 Paris, France
Bastille is located in Paris, owes its name to the Bastille, which was in its place from the 14th century and destroyed during the French Revolution. The fortress was built by order of King Charles V to protect Paris from invasion and was a massive structure having a wall thickness of four meters and eight towers 22 meters high. Later, it was transformed into a prison. For the conclusion of the Bastille did not need a court decision - it was enough to seal a letter with the king. In the Bastille contained mostly political prisoners and religious prisoners and young rake, honed in prison at the request of their families. The most famous prisoner of the Bastille Voltaire. He sat there twice, and next door to the Marquis de Sade. The prisoners were kept in 5-7 story towers, decorated with various items of furniture. Conditions of detention in the Bastille were not the worst. In July 14, 1789 at the beginning of the French Revolution, the fortress was taken revolutionary-minded people and for three years was completely dismantled. Today we can see the outlines laid out on the pavement of the square in a contrasting color. Bastille, since 1860, is now celebrated as a national holiday.
The very same area of the Bastille was created in 1803. In 1808, Napoleon as part of its redevelopment project Paris, decided to erect a giant fountain in the square in the form of an elephant, perpetuating their victory. The elephant had to be made of bronze cannons captured from the Spaniards. As a result, the finished pedestal was raised only a plaster life-size model, which is immortalized in Victor Hugo 's novel "Les Miserables". In 1846, the monument was demolished.
Today, in the center of the square stands the July Column, erected by the decision of Louis-Philippe I to commemorate the events of the July Revolution of 1830. Its grand opening was held in 1840. The column is also a memorial. At its base is arranged crypt where the remains of the fallen during the revolutions. Alongside the column rises Opera Bastille - the largest and most modern opera house in Paris. Prior to 1984, in its place was a railway station Bastille.
Today, the area often held concerts, fairs, and various public events, including political and trade union demonstration. Parisian youth gather here in the many cafes, restaurants and nightclubs. And every year on July 14 are held in the largest Parisian ball.