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Panthéon

Point Of Interest

An Hour

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The Panthéon (French: [pɑ̃.te.ɔ̃], from the Classical Greek word πάνθειον, pántheion, '(temple) to all the gods') is a monument in the 5th arrondissement of Paris, France. It is located in the area known as the Latin Quarter, standing atop the Montagne Sainte-Geneviève, at the center of the Place du Panthéon which was named after it. The edifice was built from 1758 to 1790 over the designs of Jacques-Germain Soufflot at the behest of King Louis XV of France, who meant is as a church dedicated to Saint Genevieve, the city's patron saint, whose relics were to be housed there. Neither Soufflot nor Louis XV however lived to see the church completed. By the time the construction was finished, the French Revolution had started, and the National Constituent Assembly voted in 1791 to transform the Church of Saint Genevieve into a mausoleum for the remains of distinguished French citizens, modelled on the Pantheon in Rome which had been used in this way since the 16th century. The first panthéonisé was Honoré Gabriel Riqueti, comte de Mirabeau, although his remains were removed from the place a few years later. The building was twice restored to church usage in the course of the 19th century, until the French Third Republic finally decreed its exclusive use as a mausoleum following the transfer of Victor Hugo's remains inside it. The successive changes in the building's purpose resulted in modifications of the pediment's decoration, the capping of the dome by a cross or a flag, and some of the originally existing windows were blocked up with masonry in order to give the interior a darker and more funereal atmosphere, which compromised somewhat Soufflot's initial attempt at combining the lightness and brightness of the Gothic cathedral with classical principles. The architecture of the Panthéon is an early example of Neoclassicism, surmounted by a dome that owes some of its character to Bramante's Tempietto. As of 2018 the remains of 78 people have been transferred to the Panthéon, including five women's. More than half of all the panthéonisations were made under Napoleon's rule during the First French Empire. In 1851, Léon Foucault conducted a demonstration of diurnal motion at the Panthéon by suspending a pendulum from the ceiling, a copy of which is still visible today.

Phone

+33 1 44 32 18 00

Website

http://pantheon.monuments-nationaux.fr/

Opening hours

  • Sunday 10:00 - 18:30
  • Monday 10:00 - 18:30
  • Tuesday 10:00 - 18:30
  • Wednesday 10:00 - 18:30
  • Thursday 10:00 - 18:30
  • Friday 10:00 - 18:30
  • Saturday 10:00 - 18:30
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