Arc de Triomphe Paris or the Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile Paris is one of the most famous monuments in Paris, France, at the western end of the Champs-Élysées in the centre of Charles de Gaulle Square, formerly known as Place de l’Étoile – the star or “stars” of the intersection of time formed by twelve radiant paths. The location of the arch and square is divided between three boroughs, 16th (south and west), 17th (north) and 8th (east).
The Arc de Triomphe pays tribute to those who fought and died for France during the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, with the names of all the victories and the French generals inscribed on their inner and outer surfaces. Beneath his safe is the tomb of the unknown soldier of the First World War.
The Arc de Triomphe de l’Étoile is a monument of the “Arc de Triomphe” type in neoclassical architectural style. Its location is at Charles de Gaulle Square (formerly the Place de l’Étoile), at coordinates 48.8738 – N 2.2950 E. Construction of this monument began on August 15, 1806 and was inaugurated on July 29, 1836. The height of the monument is 50 m (164 ft) wide: 45 m (148 ft) long and: 22 m (72 ft) long. The architects who designed this monument are Jean Chalgrin, Louis-Étienne and Héricart de Thury.
History of the Arc de Triomphe in Paris
A central cohesive element of the historical Axori (historical axis, a series of monuments and major axes on the route from the Louvre courtyard to the Grand Arch of Defence), the Arc de Triomphe was designed by Jean Chalgrin in 1806; his iconography program pitted the brave young Frenchman against bearded German soldiers in chains of letters. This set the tone for public monuments with a patriotic message of victory.
Inspired by the Arc de Titus in Rome, Italy, the Arc de Triomphe is 50 meters (164 feet) high, 45 m (148 feet) wide and 22 m (72 feet) deep, while its large dome is 29.19 m (95 , 8 feet) wide and 14.62 m (48.0 feet). The smallest transverse dome is 18.68 m (61.3 ft) high and 8.44 m (27.7 ft) wide. Three weeks after the Paris Victory Parade in 1919 (marking the end of the hostilities of the First World War), Charles Godefroy flew his Nieuport biplane under the main vault of the vault, the event being recorded on the news.
Paris was the highest victory arch until the completion of the Monumento a la Revolucion in Mexico City in 1938, which measured 67 meters (220 feet) high. The Arc de Triomphe in Pyongyang, completed in 1982, was modelled on the Arc de Triomphe and slightly higher at 60 m (197 ft). The Grande Arche in La Défense near Paris is 110 meters high. Although it is not called the Arc de Triomphe, it was designed on the same model and in view of the Arc de Triomphe. It is considered the tallest ark in the world.
The Arc de Triomphe is located on the right bank of the Seine in the center of the dodecagonal configuration twelve radiant lanes. It was commissioned in 1806 after the victory at Austerlitz by Emperor Napoleon at the height of his fortune. The laying of the foundations alone took two years and, in 1810, when Napoleon entered Paris from the west with his wife, Archbishop Marie-Louise of Austria, he made a wooden imitation of a completed arch.
During the restoration of Bourbon, construction was halted and was not completed until the reign of King Louis-Philippe, between 1833 and 1836, by the architect Goust and then Huyot, under the direction of Hercart de Thury. On December 15, 1840, brought back to France from St. Helena, Napoleon’s body passed him on his way to the emperor’s last resting place in Les Invalides. Before being buried in the Pantheon, Victor Hugo’s body was exhibited under the Arc on the night of May 22, 1885.
Arc de Triomphe de Paris France in the 20th Century
The sword carried by the Republic to the rescue of the Marseillaise was interrupted that day, supposedly, the Battle of Verdun began in 1916. The aid was immediately concealed by tarpaulins to hide the accident and avoid unwanted interpretations.  On August 7, 1919, Charles Godefroy managed to fly his plane under the Arc. Jean Navarre was the pilot in charge of flying, but he died on 10 July 1919 in a crash near Villacoublay while training for aviation.
After its construction, the Arc de Triomphe became a meeting point for French troops marching after a successful military campaign and for the annual military parade on 14 July. Famous parade victories around or under the Arc included Germany in 1871, France in 1919, Germany in 1940 and France and the Allies in 1944 and 1945. The U.S. postage stamp in 1945 showed the Arc de Triomphe in the background as U.S. forces descended on the Champs-Élysées and U.S. aircraft flew overhead on August 29, 1944. However, after being questioned about an unknown soldier, all military parades (including after 1919 mentioned above) had avoided walking through the arches themselves. The route taken is up to the arch and then to the side, to honor the tomb and its symbolism. Hitler in 1940 and de Gaulle in 1944 observed this custom.
By the early 1960s, the monument had become very black with coal soot and car exhaust, and during 1965-1966 was cleaned by bleaching. In the extension of the Avenue des Champs-Élysées, a new arch, the Grand Arch of Defense, was built in 1982, completing the monumental line that forms the historic axe of Paris. After the Arc de Triomphe of the Carousel and the Arc de Triomphe of the Star, the Great Arch is the third arch built from the same perspective.
In 1995, the Algerian Armed Islamic Group planted a bomb near the Arc de Triomphe that wounded 17 people in a bombing campaign. Even at the end of 2018, the Arc de Triomphe suffered acts of vandalism as part of the protest of the Yellow Jacket movement.
The Arc de Triomphe Paris as a Historical Document
The Arc de Triomphe is located in the historic axe of the Paris axe, a long perspective that stretches from the Louvre to the Grand Arch of Defense.
The astylar design was created by Jean Chalgrin (1739-1811), in the neoclassical version of ancient Roman architecture. The main academic sculptors of France are represented in the statue of the Arc de Triomphe: Jean-Pierre Cortot; François Rude; Antoine Etex; James Pradier and Philippe Joseph Henri Lemaire. The main sculptures are not integral friezes but are treated as independent trophies applied to a large mass of stone-cutting, unlike the gold-bronze applique on Empire furniture. The four groups of sculptures at the foot of the Arc are the Victory of 1810 (Cortot), Resistance and Peace (both by Antoine Étex) and the most famous of them, the Departure of the Volunteer 1792, commonly known as La Marseillaise (François Rude). The face of the allegorical representation of France appealing to its people for the latter serves as a belt for the rank of French marshal. Since the fall of Napoleon (1815), the statue representing the peace has been interpreted as commemorating the peace of 1815.
In the attic above the decorations of beautifully carved warriors, there are 30 carved shields with the names of the main French victories of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars. The interior wall of the monument lists the names of 660 people, including 558 French generals of the First French Empire; The names of the generals killed in action are highlighted. On the shortest side of the four support columns are also written the names of the main French victories in the Napoleonic wars. The battles between Napoleon’s departure from Elba and his final defeat at Waterloo were not included.
For four years from 1882 to 1886, a monumental statue of Alexandre Falguière occupied the top of the arch. Entitled The Triumph of the Revolution, it describes a horse-drawn carriage preparing to “destroy anarchy and despotism”.” He was there for only four years before falling from the rubble.
Inside the monument, a permanent exhibition organized by artist Maurice Benayoun and architect Christophe Girault opened its doors in February 2007. Steel installations and new media question the symbolism of national monuments, questioning the balance of symbolic messages during these monuments. two centuries, oscillating between war and peace.
There is an Unknown Soldier’s Tomb in the Arc de Triomphe in Paris
Beneath the Arc is the tomb of unknown soldiers of the First World War. Buried on Armistice Day 1920, it had the first eternal flame in Western and Eastern Europe since the fire of the Vestal Virgins in the 4th century. It burned to commemorate the dead that had never been identified (today during the Second World War).
A ceremony was held at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers every 11 November on the anniversary of the armistice of 11 November 1918 signed by the Powers Agreement and Germany in 1918. Initially, it was decided on November 12, 1919 to bury the remains of unknown soldiers in the Pantheon, but the campaign of writing public letters led to the decision to bury him under the Arc de Triomphe.
The coffin was inserted into the chapel on the first floor of the Arc on November 10, 1920 and placed in the final resting place on January 28, 1921. The plaque at the top contained the words HERE REPOSE A FRENCH SOLDAT MORT FOR THE PATRIE 1914-1918 (“Here is a French soldier who died for the homeland of 1914-1918”).
In 1961, U.S. President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy paid tribute to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, accompanied by President Charles de Gaulle. After the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963, Mrs. Kennedy recalled the eternal flame to the Arc de Triomphe and asked that the eternal flame be placed next to her husband’s grave at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. President Charles de Gaulle went to Washington to attend a state funeral and saw Jacqueline Kennedy light an eternal fire inspired by her visit to France.
Main Statues and Reliefs at the Arc de Triomphe Paris
There are four main groups of sculpture in each of the pillars of the Arc de Triomphe Paris, namely:
- The Departure of 1792 (or La Marseillaise), by François Rude. Sculpture groups celebrate the causes of the First Republic of France during the 10 August uprising. Above the volunteer is the personification of winged Liberty. This group functioned as a recruitment tool in the early months of the First World War and encouraged France to invest in war loans in 1915-1916.
- The Triumph of 1810, by Jean-Pierre Cortot celebrating the Schonbrunn Agreement. This group included Napoleon, crowned by the goddess of Victory.
- Antoine Étex’s 1814 Resistance commemorates the French Resistance to the Allied Army during the Sixth Coalition War.
- The Peace of 1815, by Antoine Étex commemorating the Paris Agreement, concluded that year.
The six reliefs carved on the front of the Ark, representing important moments of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic era, include:
- The funeral of General Marceau (funeral of General Marceau), by PH Lamaire (SOUTH façade, right),
- The Battle of Abukir (Battle of Abukir), by Bernard Seurre (SOUTH façade, left),
- The Battle of Jemappes (Battle of Jemappes), by Carlo Marochetti (EST façade),
- The arcole Bridge (Battle of Arcole), by JJ Feuchère (NORTH façade, right),
- The capture of Alexandria, (Alexandria Falls), by JE Chaponnière (NORTH façade, left),
- The Battle of Austerlitz (Battle of Austerlitz), by JFT Gechter (WEST façade),
Other details Sculpture and relief at the Arc de Triomphe Paris
- The names of several major battles of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars etched in the attic, including
- A list of French victories carved under a large arch inside the monument.
- On the interior façade of the small engraved arches the names of the military leaders of the Revolution and the French Empire. The names of those killed on the battlefield are highlighted.
- Large arcades are decorated with allegorical figures depicting characters from Roman mythology (by J. Pradier).
- Ceiling with 21 carved roses
- There are several signs at the foot of the monument
- Proclamation Plate of the Republic
Access lines to the Arc de Triomphe in Paris
The Arc de Triomphe is accessible by RER and Métro, with the exit at the Charles de Gaulle-Étoile station. Due to heavy traffic on the roundabout where the Arc is the centre, pedestrians are advised to use one of the two underpasses located on the Champs Elysees and Avenue de la Grande Armée. An elevator will take visitors almost to the top – to the attic, where there is a small museum that contains large arc models and tells its story since its construction. The other 40 steps continue to climb to reach the top, the terrace, from where you can enjoy the beautiful views of Paris.
The location of the arch and the Place de l’Étoile are divided between three boroughs, the 16th (south and west), the 17th (north) and the 8th (east).
The main source: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arc_de_Triomphe