Photographer's Note

The Arc de Triomphe in Paris was commissioned by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1806 after the victory at Austerlitz. He then promised his soldiers that they would return home under arcs of triumph. However, it was never completed under his reign. Napoleon was defeated in 1814 and King Louis XVIII was then able to secure the French throne thanks to the support of the Allied Powers. Since Napoleon was defeated King Louis XVIII had plans to pull down the not yet completed Arc, but after a military expedition to Spain in 1823 he decided the Arc should be finished as a monument of himself. But Louis XVIII passed away in 1824 before the Arc was completed. It was not finished until 1836 under the reign of King Louis-Philippe. It was decided that the Arc should not honour King Louis XVIII and since Napoleon had been defeated more than twenty years earlier the Arc became a monument to Frances Armed Forces rather than to the victories of Napoleon. King Louis Philippes prime minister Adolphe Thiers, that was not an imperialist, made sure that the friezes of the Arc in all essentials presented the victories of the revolutionary army except for the unavoidable battle of Austerlitz. However, one of four large sculptural relieves of the pillars of Arc, The Triumph of 1810 by Cortot honours Napoleon (seen to the left in the photo). On the right pillar the Departure of the Volunteers in 1792 (La Marseillaise) by Franois Rude is found. It honours a French revolutionary armys victory over a Prussian army in the battle of Valmy. On the other side of the Arc there are corresponding sculptural relieves called the Resistance of 1814 and the Peace of 1815, both by Etex. Beneath the Arc there is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from the First World War. An eternal flame lit in 1920 commemorates victims of the world wars.

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Photo Information
  • Copyright: ulf eriksson (UlfE) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2516 W: 81 N: 3657] (14641)
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  • Date Taken: 2006-11-06
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  • Camera: Sony DSC-V3
  • Exposure: f/2.8, 1/8
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  • Date Submitted: 2006-12-30 9:30
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Additional Photos by ulf eriksson (UlfE) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2516 W: 81 N: 3657] (14641)
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