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The Royal Palace - Paris

The Royal Palace - Paris


The Royal Palace (Palais Royal in French) is a palace with gardens north of the Louvre Museum in Paris.


Royal Palace - Paris

Royal Palace - Paris

Despite its name, never was a residence of kings. Its construction was commissioned by Cardinal Richelieu, to architect Jacques Lemercier. Construction work began in 1624. The building was then known as the Palais Cardinal (cardinal's palace). Richelieu had the painter Philippe de Champaigne for decorative work, and ended up bequeathing the palace to the French crown.


After the death of Louis XIII, became home to the Queen Mother, Anne of Austria, Cardinal Mazarin and the young Louis XIV. It was at this time when the building began to be known by the name of "Royal Palace." Later, the Palais Royal became the Paris residence of the Dukes of Orleans.


Royal Palace - Paris

Royal Palace - Paris

During the minority of age of Louis XV, the regent, Philippe d'Orleans, led the court from the palace. His grandson, Louis Philippe Joseph d'Orléans, better known as Philip Equality, became popular in Paris to open to the public the gardens of the palace. Instructed the neoclassical architect Victor Louis to rebuild the structures that were in the garden, and the closing of it by colonnades. Likewise, small shops were built.


At the end of each gallery there was a theater. The largest of these became the seat of the Comédie Française. The first theater built in the Palais Royal was also commissioned by Richelieu to Lemercier in 1641. During the reign of Louis XIV, the theater hosted performances of works by Molière. Later became the Opera House under the direction of Jean-Baptiste Lully. From the 1780s until 1837, the Palais Royal again became the center of social and political intrigues of Paris. We could find one of the most popular cafés of the period.


On July 12, 1789, the young Camille Desmoulins jumped on a table in the cafe and announced to the crowd that the crown had come to an end. Two days later came the storming of the Bastille.


After the restoration of the Bourbons, the young Alexander Dumas got a job in the offices of the powerful Duke of Orleans, who regained control of the Palace during the Restoration. During the 1848 revolution, the palace was attacked and looted by bands of uncontrolled. In the period of the Second French Empire, the Palais Royal was home to a branch of the Bonaparte family, represented by Prince Napoleon, cousin of Napoleon III.


Royal Palace - Paris

Royal Palace - Paris

Today is the headquarters of the State Council, the Constitutional Council and the Ministry of Culture. In the back of the gardens we have the old buildings of the Bibliothèque nationale de France, and the deposit of the library with a collection of more than 6 million books, documents, maps and prints; most of the collections have moved to a more modern building.


Do not miss: Buren columns, archways.

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The Royal Palace - Paris

Address : Place du Palais-Royal
Zip code : 75001
City : Paris - France
Area : Louvre, Opéra, Chatelet
Phone : (33)1 47 03 92 16
Metro/Bus : Palais-Royal



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