Archive for November 16th, 2018

November 16, 2018

Some streets of Versailles!!!

So in my ongoing efforts to bring you to Versailles as a destination and to help the recent survey of the city of Versailles that claims that 98% of visitors to the city only come to see the castle,pity; let me tell you a bit more about some streets in my beloved Versailles!

The city is a treasure vault of historical, architectural wonders and the best way is to walk it; the city is not big, easily walkable. It might be a bit long but I think is worth telling you about my old home town. So, here are some of the ones I like the most, just the most as all are worth the detour. VERSAILLES! Hint below my neighborhood of old.

Versailles

Rue Colbert. Named after Jean-Baptiste Colbert who was one of the principal ministers of king Louis XIV . He developed the French colonial factories and companies. At  N 1: Hotel de Grammont until 1809.  N  5, Hotel de Villacerf, property at the end of the 19C of Prince Roland Bonaparte.  N 7 former Hotel of Choiseul, then of Villeroy, which housed in 1870-71 the Prussian minister of War and his services.  N 13: Current EDF, (electricity company in France) location of the former hotel of Aumont under the old regime and home of Charles-Frédéric Nepveu, architect of the château under Louis-Philippe, at the end of his life. One of the streets very close to the Castle across from the Royal Chapel.

Versailles

Rue Georges Clemenceau ;  Old rue Saint-Pierre et du  Vermandois in 1684 until the kennel. There was a fountain there.  The name of the French politician , nicknamed “The Tiger” and the “Father of the Victory”, who was president of the Council from 1906 to 1909 and from 1917 to 1920.  The street extends through the place André-Mignot, former Place de la Vénérie-Royale , then the Tribunaux. N  2: Hotel disappeared from the Louveterie (under the reign of Louis XIV).  No. 5 and No. 7: Current Monoprix convenient dept store. At the entrance to the wonderful  passage Saint-Pierre at N 19: Former property of the Lambinet family, (Jean-François was mayor of Versailles in 1848) who gave his name to the museum of the same name and city of Versailles museum located on Avenue de la Reine. This disect the Avenue de Paris and the Avenue de Saint Cloud, and great for shopping at Monoprix! and the Post Office but as you can see nice buildings even here too.

versailles

And closer to home base, this is the Rue Carnot , the former Rue de la Pompe  (pump) name due to the water tower, built in 1665 to No. 7 house which fed at the beginning of the reign of Louis XIV the reservoir of the Cave of Tethys from the pond of Clagny. The pumping was done with a horse wagon ride.  It was later named after the President of the French Republic Sadi Carnot. He was assassinated by the Italian anarchist Santa Geronimo Caserio. At  N  1: Carnot Elementary School. Former Hotel de Noailles, owned by the family of the Marquis de La Fayette’s wife who stayed there. Acquired by the city in 1867. N  2 a false Cellar door with a bird (a magpie).  N  2a  Neoclassical facade. Former property of Antoine Gibus, a hat maker ,from 1862 to 1870 (his name designates a top hat), then more recently René Aubert President of the Académie de Versailles.  No. 5: Stables of King Louis XIV in 1672, then of the Queen and the Dauphine; Prison in the French revolution, then barracks of the Queen’s Quarter and today Court of Appeal of Justice. N  6: Former hotel of the Duc de Bouillon,  N 10: Entrance of the stables of Monsieur, Duke of Orléans (brother of King Louis XIV).  N° 11: Facade of the Pavilion of the Springs (House of the caretakers) built in 1683 with drinking water reservoir for the city. The water was derived from the sources of the towns of Rocquencourt and Chesnay. N  12: Old hotel of Duras and Montmorency, then Bath spa Hotel.  N 40: Former Hôtel de la Roche or Royal Pavilion (family whose members were caretakers of the menagerie).  N 44: Former Café Amaury at the corner of the Avenue de Saint-Cloud, in 1789 place of meeting of the Breton Club (the third State) from where the Club des Jacobins of Paris came out. Find me one, from rue Carnot entering the passage antiques of the rue des Deux Portes!

Versailles rue Carnot to rue de deux portes 2013

Back closer to the castle and one of my favorite street that loved to walked many times is the Rue des Reservoirs . Created in 1672, the old street of the trough located at the entrance of the Rue de la Paroisse. The name of the reservoirs of the castle built in 1685 and now extinct due to the construction of the north wing of the castle. They were located above Madame de Pompadour’s hotel.  At  N  2-4: Hotel of the government (of the Governor of Versailles), former Hotel of Louvois built in 1672, renovated in 1778. Attributed to the Ministry of War in 1834. In 2015, rehabilitation of public offices in private housing.  N 6: Hôtel Ecquevilly  named after the captains of the Hunters of Saint-Germain.  N  7 Hotel of Reservoirs built  at the beginning of the 20C. It replaced the private mansion of Madame de Pompadour and the one in the king’s storage room. The aerial pump of water from the reservoirs was located before 1750 here. It was the Government Hotel from 1765 to 1789 before knowing several owners and being bought by the State in 1934 and assigned to the castle. N  8 former Hotel de Sérent rebuilt.  N 9-11 Hotel du Garde-Meuble de la Couronne (or wardrobe of the Crown) built in 1784 . It housed the prefecture of Seine-et-Oise from 1800 to 1867. Rehabilitation in 2015 in apartments of standing with underground parking. N  13 Théâtre Montansier,(gorgeous a must to see), current Theater Municipal de Versailles, built in 1776 by Mademoiselle de Montansier, founder and director of numerous Parisian theatres (including those of the Palais-Royal and the Variétés).  This courtyard and City Theater was created by Marguerite Brunet, known as “De Montansier” who was the director of performances in the aftermath of the court. It was inaugurated in the presence of Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette in 1777. It is distinguished by its entirely round room and its blue and gold decor.  N  16: Hotel of the family of the Trémoïlle (duke of Thouars) put on sale after the French revolution now not well kept. N 19: (at the intersection with the Rue de la Paroisse), building where Ferdinand de Lesseps was born in 1852.  N 21 house where Blaise de Jouvencel lived  former mayor of Versailles.  N  22 Hôtel de Condé where lived and died Jean de La Bruyère  and was born General Gaspard Gourgaud, a memorialist of Napoleon. Now Seventh-day Adventist Church.  N  27: (at the intersection with the Boulevard de la Reine), a building where the painter Henri-Eugène le Sidaner lived .  N 36: Former Hotel Vatel, one of the best restaurants of Versailles in 1900, disappeared in the 1980’s.

Versailles

And this one is hotter still , very close to my home. And a must to walk by as it is close to the Castle but also the Notre Dame market! As well as the historical significant Notre Dame Church (back was my home area!). The Rue de la Paroisse; this one is the one I cross most often at home. Filled with the sandy lands of the summit of the Butte de Montbauron under Louis XIV. At  N 1: Location of the trough removed with the drying of the pond of Clagny from 1770, then land acquired by Soufflot architect of the Pantheon and now the Notre Dame market. N  7a: House of the lawyer Albert Joly in 1869.  N  11: Hotel Pièche from the beginning of the 18C with facade ornaments of the late 19C. Jean-Joseph Pièche was a musician from the King’s chamber. See the dogs seated and the garlands of flowers carved between the windows. He would have seen Rameau and Boucher pass. It was restored between the two wars.  N  3-5-7-7bis-11-21,facades of houses established in the 18C.  N  15 House with the sign of the royal mark in the 18C.  N  32:19C cast-iron balcony guardrail. N  35: Notre-Dame Church created in 1686.  N  37-39-41 former House of the mission of Notre-Dame (1686); Order founded by Saint-Vincent-de-Paul.  N 43: Supposedly the house of Dionis surgeon of Louis XIV.  N 49: House of Félix de Tassy, surgeon of Louis XIV .N  53 Hotel de Bretagne, house of Guy Fagon, surgeon of Louis XIV (or the name of Saint-Côme patron of Surgeons, formerly attributed to this portion of street).  N 63: House at the Grande Fontaine, by the name of Fontaine, the public works contractor who resided there under Louis XIV.  N  79 building with the sign of the Rising Sun. Birth House of the poet Jean-François Ducis.  N  2 and 4 House of the caretakers built under Louis XVI.  At No. 4 lived Joseph-Adrien Le Roi, head of Clinic at the hospice and historian of the Streets of Versailles (1860).  N  6-6 bis 8-10  Hôtel de Saxena: stable of the Dauphine mother of Louis XVI, then Hotel de Berry belonging to the Comte de Provence. N  28: Restaurant of the Comte de Toulouse.  N  32 In 1811, owned by the wife of Etienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire , zoologist at the Natural History Museum.. No.14 or 15 Location of Madame de Maintenon  charitable home, rebuilt in 1772. N 108: Former property of Jean-Baptiste Farrugia, geographer of the Ministry of War who had the two balconies built in 1783, bearing his initials and the motto “Fidem Fortuna Coronat” or Fortune Rewards Fidelity   N  110, 19C cast iron balcony guardrail.  N  112, in 1734 Auberge Au roi Charlemagne  cabaret in Versailles.

Versailles

And one very popular , we all cross it  walk it and things to do , the grand the beautiful and read some tidbits of it that it will worth your time to pass by and see or go into.  Avenue de Paris, because it went from the castle to the Louvre entering Paris by the Avenue de Versailles approprialy ::)

Avenue de Paris created in 1682, the central axis of the Trident set up by Jules Hardouin-Mansart (Sceaux, Paris, Saint Cloud). One of the widest avenues of France (97 meters). The avenue was planted with a double mail of elms then replaced by sycamore trees due to elm disease.

Versailles

you see at No. 1: Grande Ecurie (stables)  of the king.  Now houses the city’s Archives  open (Consultation room) from Tuesday to Friday from 14h to 17h45 amongst many others see other post.  The reason why it is shown in the Avenue de Paris, as the Petite Ecurie done to the Place d’Armes. N 2 bis: Old Porch (Pullman Hotel) remains of the artillery barracks created by Napoleon III (see the N of Napoleon on the entrance door and the Napoleonic Eagle on the entrance to the  Avenue du General-de-Gaulle). The barracks was destroyed in 1988 to make way for the shopping district of the Les Ménages (where you can buy tickets for the Château).Also, around the  tourist office of Versailles , open from Tuesday to Saturday from 9h to 18h, on Sundays and Mondays from 11h to 17h.  N  3: central Post Office building .  N ° 4 Hôtel de Ville  (city/town hall)  of Versailles, ( a must to visit you can) former hotel of the Princess of Conti (Marie-Anne de Bourbon, daughter of Louis XIV and the Marquise de Lavaliere), and then of the Grand masters of the castle. The lower part overlooking the avenue of General de Gaulle dates from the reign of Louis XIV and was the first city/town hall. The more imposing part, Neo Louis XIII style and overlooking the Avenue de Paris, dated 1897-1900.  The gardens of the city/town hall perpetuate and renew the tradition of the mosaiculture.  N  6: Carved portal of the Hotel des gendarmerie de la garde de Louis XV, built in 1737 , barracks until 1908 and current departmental department of Tax Services restored in 2014. Concentrate in its upper part, mainly around the bull’s eye, the carved decor is made up of military trophy falls (with armour and helmets of wars), garlands of flowers, fins and shells, whose finesse and richness make it a masterpiece of  rocaille stone art. It bears the motto of the gendarmes of the guard of the King: “Quo Jubet iratus Jupiter” or where Jupiter furiously orders.  N 11-13 Prefecture of Versailles (dept government of Yvelines). Succeeding in 1792 at the Vénerie (the King’s hunting kennel) and at the narrow rue des Reservoirs, the former hotel of the department, then prefecture in 1800,  was inaugurated in 1867. The prefecture was occupied in 1870 by the King of Prussia and his staff, then by Adolphe Thiers, Mac-Mahon and Jules Grevy as hotel of the Presidency of the French Republic until 1879. The prefecture and the Yvelines General Council have been occupying the premises since 1880.  N  15: School of Music founded by Emile Cousin in 1878 (then transferred to Rue de Jouvencel).  N 19: Police hotel in place of the old monumental stables of the Countess du Barry mistress of Louis XV, built in 1772, then owned by the Comte de Provence brother of Louis XVI , and himself later Louis XVIII, who changed them with the architect J. Chalgrin . The buildings housed the lancers of Napoleon’s Imperial Guard who were killed in Waterloo, then the Montbauron barracks. They are now home to the police station. N  21: The old hotel of the Countess du Barry, built in 1751, and today Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Val d’Oise (95) and Yvelines(78) since 1937.

Versailles

N ° 22 the hotel Menus Plaisirs. This hotel was raised by Louis XV and occupied by the administration of the Menus-Plaisirs between 1739 and 1745. It housed the workshops of sets and the material of the Games and shows related to the festivities of the King and the court. A provisional room hosted the assembly of Notables in 1787-88, and finally the deputies summoned to the States General on May 5, 1789 by the King. It was in this room that the abolition of privileges and the declaration of Human and Citizen Rights were voted on. It was bought and demolished in 1800. The hotel became a cavalry barracks, then the technical services of the city were lodged from 1942 to 1988. Since 1987, it houses the Center of Baroque Music of Versailles which produces concerts and shows in France and abroad and brings together a research center and a singing school.  Go up the stairs to the bottom of the courtyard to discover the location of the room of the General States. On the right pillar of the entrance Avenue de Paris the elevation of the place at 130 meters is carved into the stone.  No. 28: Prison for women. It was installed in 1789 at the site of a former boarding school built in 1750. Then the state bought it in 1857 and enlarged the place in 1860.  The prison for men is located in Bois D’Arcy since 1980.   N  31: Lycée Jean-de-la-Bruyère, (high school) named after the moralistic writer who died in Versailles in 1696. It was named in 1962.  In 1880, Miss Arnaud created a secular school for girls at this site (on land formerly belonging to the Countess du Barry), which became municipal and then owned by the state in 1906.  N 38-40: Chamber of Notaries. Hotel of the time of Louis XVI.  N 63 Pavillon de Provence, former residence of Monsieur, brother of the king and king Louis XVIII was born here. From 1922 to 1940, the abode housed the eastern Normal School of Daughters of the Universal Israelite Alliance. From 1946 to 1962, it was taken over by the children’s relief work and welcomed Elie Wiesel, the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986.  N 68: Convent of Solitude belonging to the Sisters of Notre-Dame du Cénacle. This building associated with an English park of the late 17C, reworked in the 19C, belonged to the Earl of Vergennes, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Louis XVI from 1775 to 1787.  N  70: Lycée Marie Curie, (high school) named after the French physicist and chemist, of Polish origin, who received twice the Nobel Prize for her research on radiation and radium in 1903 and 1911. N  73 Domaine de Madame Elizabeth. Owned by the community of Célestins monks, having been redeemed and built by the Prince and Princess of Rohan-Guéméné, then by Louis XVI, it was given as a gift to his sister who was later guillotined in 1792. Manufacture of watchmaking at the French revolution.  The Yvelines General Council bought it in 1983 as well as the Orangerie in 1997.  In 2016, the park designed in the English way before the revolution, allows to appreciate a remarkable collection of native and exotic forest species such as American oak, purple beech, lime tree, sycamore trees etc, a garden of aromatic plants and demonstrations of permaculture and a pet park. N  89 Reliefs above the door of the Vauban School, made in 1957; They represent Le Nôtre and Vauban.  N 90 bis: Old ponds where the stream of Madame Elisabeth’s English park was poured. Then replaced by a rose garden in the Truffaut nurseries, then by the residence of the Roseraie.

Versailles

Versailles

At N 93: Robert de Montesquiou-Fezensac , one of the personalities of the Literary and Social Society of the late 19C, was a tenant from 1894. In particular, he received Marcel Proust and Sarah Bernhardt.  N  107: Maison Saint-Joseph.  N  109-109 bis: Congregation of the Servant Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.  N  111 Parc Chauchard with the picturesque and vast music pavilion of Madame, Countess of Provence, sister-in-law of Louis XVI and wife of Louis XVIII, built around 1780. This pavilion is associated with a small enclosed rectangular garden at the end of which is the statue of Alfred Chauchard. Madame’s park was cut in two in the French revolution, one that later became the Lycée Sainte-Geneviève (1913 high school), the other for several successive owners, including the last Alfred Chauchard, founder of the department stores of the Louvre in Paris, which was the place for his most deserving workers who became owners in 1902.  At the entrance to the street you have two pavilions of the Grille d’Octroi or passage of taxes  of neoclassical architecture, set up in 1824 and  were closed in 1943. The right-hand building on the way to Paris was reserved for the caretakers and the left to collect the rights to the goods brought into the city. Around it you have the square or Place Louis XIV, and here finishes the Avenue de Paris on the edge of the town of Viroflay.

Versailles

So here is a little bit of my beloved Versailles, a town full of history of France and the world, that needs more personal and up close attention by you all. Like I said, Versailles is a lot more than the castle!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

ps. And I say goodbye for a week on business assignment in Asia: cheers!

 

 

November 16, 2018

La Ferme de Gally or farm of Gally!

Ok so now in a gloomy foggy day of 15C in my beautiful Morbihan, and Paris not much different, i will dwell into my beloved area of Versailles ; many things to see and seldom bypassed.

When my boys were younger we came here often , it was a nice way to get away from Versailles into the countryside. We had petting farm, gardening, collect of fruits, and history all around with the still standing gate of Gally that went into the back of the Castle of Versailles (if you are inside the castle property this is way back beyond the Grand Canal you can do walks there still just far back)  ,where we used to do our jogging and playing with the boys as well. Oh those wonderful younger days..! I still found one personal photo

Saint Cyr l'ecole

I like to tell you a bit on this wonderful Ferme de Gally or Gally’s farm in Saint Cyr l’Ecole just off Versailles.

The farm of Gally is located at the western end of the park of the Château de Versailles. It is about  3 km from the castle. The farm of  Gally is located between the l’Etoile Royale (in the north), the Allée Royal de  Villepreux, and the Porte de Maintenon  at Bailly (south).

You can come here better with a car but if in Versailles bus line 17 of Transdev  takes you close, Ligne 17 in about 17 minutes from the Versailles Rive Droite train station (closest to my neighborhood) on Maréchal Foch direction Grille de Maintenon you get off here and walk just a couple minutes to the farm entrance on Route de Saint-Cyr. By car take the Route de Versailles,  D10 along the Orangerie on your right and the pièce d’eau des Suisses on your left, and continue direction Saint Cyr l’Ecole until the junction with the D7 road still direction St Cyr l’Ecole and you will see the panels for the farm on your right hand side in 6 km! from in front of the Castle.

There are 3 boutiques now and many more but I will concentrate on the original and my fav place to go egg hunting in Easter with the boys or just shopping there and collecting fruits and vegetables by hand ! As well as a small petting farm with domestic animals! The one in Saint-Cyr-l’École  is at Route de Bailly (D7).  Open from Monday to Sunday without interruption from 9h30 to 19h. Open during school holidays and holidays at regular times. And the nice Café gally entrance at Rue du Doctor Vaillant (D7) . This is in the Yvelines dept 78 of the Ïle de France region.

Saint cyr l'ecole

A bit of history I like

Gally is first of all the history of the Laureau family, a farmer here  since 1746. And at this time purveyors to the kings at Versailles. Today, brothers Dominique and Xavier Laureau, the custodians of the transmitted know-how, have diversified their traditional activities and bring their expertise in the field of plants in the service of individuals and companies.

The name of Gally would refer to the quality of the soils in the vicinity of the brook now the stream of Gally and the marshy area that was Versailles before the clearing for the castle.  The brook which takes its source in the Grand Canal of Versailles and which runs off to the west of the Plain of Versailles.

Gally’s farm was first a priory, attached to the abbey of Sainte-Geneviève in Paris. The earliest written record recorded to date on the existence of the Priory of Gally comes from a bull of Pope Alexander III, written in 1163. In 1663 and 1675, king  Louis XIV, residing at the Château de Versailles, encompassed the lands of Trianon and Musseloue, redeemed from the Abbaye de Sainte-Geneviève. Gally’s Farm then entered the royal estate while the king arranged the surroundings of the small park. The entire land of the Gally farm became the property of the king in 1684, when Abbé Emanuel de Sainte-Geneviève sold the remaining 319 ares.

In 1806, Napoleon I , bought the estate of Gally, after having set up the conservation of the Royal estate. As a result, Gally’s farm experiencing a revival in its agricultural operation, especially since the royal hunting no longer prevented agricultural work.

New buildings have appeared over the centuries, depending on the needs of the time and the wishes of the different owners. According to the experts’ estimates some buttresses and columns could date from the 10C. The shepherd’s house dates from the 11C.  The west façade of the farmhouse corresponds to the priory and dates from the late 11C or early 12C. The skylights and some buttresses date back to the 13C.  The sheep herd dates from the 15C. The old barn dates back to the 17C.  Gally’s farm remains to this day one of the oldest built ensembles, still active in this part of the west of Paris.

Today, the farm is divided into 4 sectors of activity: self-service harvesting of more than 40 ha composed of an orchard and a vegetable garden; The “Open Farm”, an educational farm allowing children to approach and familiarize themselves with animals (cows, horses, pigs, chickens, ducks, goats) and discover nature through fun and practical workshops (making juice of apples, bread and butter, extraction of honey from the hive, work around animal footprints, gardening sessions); Finally a garden center. You can also buy fresh products at the shop, where you find a coffee, which of course only cooks products from the farm. One can finally participate in cooking courses, or for the younger ones to organize there its birthday. An original address very popular in the beautiful days.

Some additional webpages to help you plan your trip here are

Official Ferme de Gally

Official Gally’s group more on Gardening

Official La Cueillette or fruit veggies picking at Gally

Tourist office of Paris on Ferme de Gally

There you go a nice side trip from Versailles and you thought it is only the castle right ! There is a whole world to discover in Versailles and surrounding royal areas indeed. Hope you enjoy it ,good for the entire family.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

November 16, 2018

Place Hoche, Versailles!

So here we are in another week moving right along in November and waiting for another long trip to Asia. I have to come back to my gorgeous historical Royal and Imperial Versailles. Not enough credit living on the shadows of Paris and tourism mayhem. However, is better i say so huh! And no, it is not a thing to do from Paris, it is on its own thank you.

Ok ok, I am biased, even thus work in Paris for several years and visit often, I used to Lived in VERSAILLES for almost 10 glorious years! It will always be in my mind. One more reason why I think buddy papa Hemingway was short as he should had written a second volume on France is a movable feast !

Ok so enough of my propaganda lol! Let me tell you up close and personal about a square, street very close to me where I spent all those wonderful years. Bear with me!

The Place Hoche sits in the middle of the street of the same name that has a direct view from the Notre Dame Collegiate Church pass the square and pass Avenue Nepvue then into Avenue Rockefeller and  into the Place d’Armes in front of the Castle/Museum of Versailles. One of the most pleasant walks to do in my Versailles and plenty of architectural and tidbits historical facts along the way.  Welcome to my Versailles, the Royal and Imperial city of France. A fact, if the French constitution needs to be modified, change, altered in any way, the entire French government needs to deliberate here including the President, making Versailles the de facto capital of France by Constitutional rights.

Versailles

Located in the heart of the Notre-Dame district, the place Hoche is marked by history, and part of these squares of Versailles laden with history and ignored wrongly by visitors/tourists. As said in previous posts, the city of Versailles conducted a survey on visitors and found that 98% only come here for the Castle/museum only!!!  Located in the perspective of the Notre-Dame Church, it was drawn up in 1671 and was at the time called Place Dauphine. It was the first in France to adopt an octagonal shape. It shows well as to the trio of Avenues  Sceaux, Paris and Saint-Cloud  that linen up from the Castle into the city, for the appeal of the king for a thoughtful planning.

You will find looking carefully at the square at No 4 a former hotel Jacques Bénigne Bossuet , Bishop of Meaux and preceptor of the Grand Dauphin in 1674 as well as advisor that became known as the Eagle of Meaux  (dept Seine et Marne 77 my dear late wife Martine birthplace). And it was the building of the local  Chamber of Notaries in 1832.  At No 6 you see the Hotellerie de la Belle Image (beautiful Image), where in 1783 or 85 , the Countess of La Motte had an appointment with the Cardinal de Rohan to be handed over the necklace of Queen Marie Antoinette who had never ordered the jewel. The scam was discovered shortly thereafter, under the restoration of the Café des Gondoles. At No 7 you will see the residence of the architect who created the Théâtre Montansier, Jean-François Heurtier. The northeast corner of the square accommodates a hotel built in 1769, whose façade with the mention “to the Queen of France” is one of the most remarkable of the square. It was the home of Jean-François Heurtier also inspector General of the buildings of the king. At No 9: house of Jacques Rayer, Cook to the General Common, then in 1869  to the chief medical officer of the Hospital of Versailles and his son-in-law the historian Emile Bourgeois, member of the Institute de France.

Another peculiarity of the square, it allows Versailles to find shade under its large chestnut trees, identified among the remarkable tree of the town alongside the sycamores of the city/town hall.

At the center of this square is the statue of Lazare Hoche, General at the age of 25 and famous citizen of Versailles. Louis Lazare Hoche, born June 24, 1768, at 18 ,rue de Satory. He died on 19 September 1797 in Wetzlar,Hesse (Germany). He is buried in Weißenthurm, a small town near Koblenz.  The place of the monument General Hoche there is called  “Auf dem Frauenberg”. Which the help of a dictionary tells me means Pilgrimage Church of Frauenberg. German speakers can correct me ,welcome.

VErsailles

One of his sad actions concerning the region where I now lived in Brittany and the Morbihan dept 56 in particular is that he not only  repressed the British landings, but also, of the immigrant Bretons entering by the Quiberon Peninsula, commanded by de Puisaye, Hervilly and Sombreuil, from 23 June to 21 July 1795, and defeated the Chouans (rebels peasants against the French revolution). He was,  then obtained command of all the armies of the West, including those in the Vendée. More in French here:  The Vendéen history on Hoche

VErsailles

The place Hoche was the place of public access to the wheelbarrows and blue chairs in the 18C and the capital executions during the French revolution .  The guillotine made seven victims here. The statue to Gen Hoche was erected in 1836 and a public garden in 1853.. Finally, during WWII, the place Hoche was marked by the arrest and deportation of seven resistance fighters aged 22 to 50. A plaque hung on a wall reminds us of their sacrifice.

My Versailles ,le quartier Notre-Dame, my neighborhood where I lived. Terrible in describing things but this is gorgeous place to live in. The neighborhood or district here is the new place after the Church and it grew quickly between the avenues leading to Saint-Cloud and the Clagny lake (now the market of Notre Dame). Destined to welcome the population in the service of the Court and the King, it is drawn by the architect Louis Le Vau and his partner François Orbay. The place Hoche (former place Dauphine) connects it, in 1674, to the castle, according to a device that will be permanently established as a model of urbanism. A bit later, in 1686, the architect Jules Hardouin-Mansart was responsible for the construction of the Notre-Dame Church, which would be held as a Royal parish (where the birth and baptismal and some marriages records of the Kings descendants are still kept in the crypt in the basement!.

My neighborhood in French : https://www.versailles-tourisme.com/quartier-notre-dame.html

Across the square cutting it thru it is the Rue Hoche , before known as Place Dauphine, Place de la République, Place de la Loi, Place de la Colonne, Place Napoleon,and finally Place Hoche under  Louis-Philippe in 1832. Some interesting things to see are at No 5 , the temple or Protestant Church since 1820 ,with a renovation done 1880-1882  at 3, Rue Hoche. Also the Ancient Chapel of the Reposoir of the Procession of the Holy Sacrament under the former regime, and a high place of the Theophilanthropists’  under the Revolution.  At No 16 the house ordered built by André Le Nôtre, master gardener of  Louis XIV. We have difficulty proven he lived here but know he sold it in 1686, and before Mirabeau lodge here in 1789.

Versailles

Along the street, well sorry but my most frequent place was the pharmacy at 6 Place Hoche lol! However, there are nice restaurants here such as the Au Chapeu Gris, Bagelstein bagels place and delicious, as well as the nice Le Sévigné resto. fyi

In all a wonderful city , and do come walk it is a lot more than the castle, history of France before your eyes. Enjoy it as much as I did/do. Crowds of course, we lived with it for 10 years I am sure you can live for a day! And it gives life and stamina to the city, we welcome all especially those seeking history and architecture wonders. VERSAILLES!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

November 16, 2018

Grande and Petite Ecuries of Versailles!

So on a quiet Friday, bit cool and cloudy foggy in my neck of the woods, I remember Autumns there in my old home of Versailles. And yes indeed, its been a while not written anything on my wonderful Royal and Imperial city of Versailles.

The city of Versailles once did a survey on visitor and found out that to their surprise not me, 98% of visitor only see the Palace/Museum of Versailles. Pity when the Domaine of Versailles outside its walls of the palace, hameau, trianons, orangerie etc is much larger and with wonderful things to see. The fault is that on many sites they have Versailles as a thing to do in Paris lol! Well , first the only similarity is that it is in the same region of ïle de France. Then, it is not in the same department, county area as Paris has a proper one as 75 sort of like been DF in Mexico or DC in the USA; and Versailles has a department 78 Yvelines all apart. Then, for history, Versailles is classic France while Paris is for the world.You get it right, cheers ::)

I like to tell you a bit more on two classic buildings that are outside the Domaine physical location but administratevely part of it. The Royal Stables are the Great and Small Stable or in French, the Grande Ecuries and the Petite Ecuries.

The Grand Ecuries (stables) are located in Versailles , Department 78 of Yvelines in the region of ïle de France. It is right in the Place d’Armes, in front of the castle, between the avenues of Saint-Cloud and Paris. Constituting with the Petite Ecuries , the Royal stables that gave work to over 1000 persons under king Louis XIV. They were built under the direction of the architect Jules Hardouin-Mansart and completed in 1682. With a merry-go-round, it sheltered the king’s hunting and war horses.

Versailles

Same as the Petite ecuries, which is separated by the Avenue de Paris, under the former regime, it was under the command of the Great squire of France and housed the school of the pages of the King, reserved for the sons of the families of the military nobility until 1550 . It also welcomed in its walls, between 1680 and 1830, the cradle of French horse riding: the School of Versailles. Between 1793 and 1794, the emblem at the pediment was removed. From 1854, the stable was occupied by the Army.

In 1978, the collection at the Museum of the Carriages or wagons of Trianon, built in 1851, was moved to the Grande Ecuries. In 1985, the Museum of carriages was opened to the public. In 2007, the Museum of carriages closed its doors for the expansion work. In 2016, the museum is open again to the public.

In 2002, the Château de Versailles returned to these places their initial function by choosing Bartabas, squire and founder of the equestrian show Zingaro. In 2003, the National Equestrian Academy of the Domaine de Versailles was inaugurated.

Equestrian Academy in official Bartabas site

La voie de l’écuyer Opus 2018 (the way of the Opus squire) is the new show going on now, more here: https://www.versailles-tourisme.com/la-voie-de-l-ecuyer-opus-2018.html

Versailles

Establishments located at the Grande Ecuries are: Gallery museum of Carriages or wagons, Equestrian Show Academy of Bartabas, and the city Archives of Versailles.

The buildings are organized around five courses: The large courtyard bordered by a colonnade in the hemicycle and two symmetrical wings;the two middle courses framed at the rear; the two small lateral courses say les manages.

Versailles

Behind the large gate, there was a rectangular carousel, which is now the theater of the National Equestrian Academy of the Domaine de Versailles, the galleries are simple to the Grande Ecuries while the Petite Ecuries has double galleries separated by the Colonnades. The ceilings of the galleries are vaulted. The visible walls of the castle are of stone, the other less visible are red brick with stone siding. The rectangular crusaders upstairs and skylights at the attic; The sculptures are presented at the pediment, eardrum and jambs of the Grand portal. The side entrances are on the Avenue de Saint-Cloud and the Avenue de Paris. In 2016, on the occasion of the opening of the gallery/museum of carriages, the sign Ecuries du Roi or King’s stables was installed on the wrough iron grille gate.

Versailles

The Petite ecuries on the Place d’Armes, in front of the castle, between the avenues of Paris and Sceaux. Constituting with the Grande Ecuries the royal stables and completed in 1681. It now houses the National School of Architecture of Versailles. Identical to the Grande Ecuries, which it is separated by the Avenue de Paris, under the former regime, it was under the orders of the first squire.

Official National School of Architecture of Versailles

Versailles

The Petite Ecuries has the care of ordinary mounts, hitch horses and wagons as well as fancy vehicles, sleighs of gondolas. From 1683 to 1685, the blacksmith was built behind the small stable. This property complements the activities of two stables.. In 2004, the La Maréchalerie   (blacksmiting) became a center of contemporary art at the National Higher School of Architecture of Versailles. It organizes several exhibitions a year. In 1787, to make economies, the activities of the Petite Ecuries were abolished and attached to the Grande Ecuries. From 1935 to 1939, it was the barracks of the Air school, with the air Base 134 Versailles. Since 1969, it has been home to the National Higher School of Architecture of Versailles. Since 1999, it also houses the restoration workshops of the Center for Research and Restoration of the museums of France.

Official Center for Restoration of the museums of France

Since 2012, the Petite Ecuries has presented to the public a gypsothèque containing a collection of about 5000 sculptures and casts according to the ancient times, especially Roman, since it was only in the 18C that archaeologists were interested in an advanced way to Greece. It is the casting collection of the Louvre Museum, the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and the Sorbonne Institute of Art and Archaeology; Under the direction of Louis XIV, Jean-Baptiste Colbert had indeed imposed on the residents of the Académie de France in Rome to copy old pieces so that they would serve as inspiration to the sculptors of Versailles.

Gypsothéque Sculptures and Mouldings gallery of Versailles

Since 2008, as part of the castle’s rescue campaign, several statues are housed in the sculpture gallery and replaced with copies. -The statue of Latone of the basin of the Latone in 2015 or the-groups of sculptures in the Bosquet des Bains d’Apollon in 2010.

Versailles

Some webpages to help you further your discovered of the many things to do in Versailles are

Official Chateau de Versailles on the Stables

Official Chateau de Versailles on Events at the Grande ecuries

Official Yvelines dept 78 tourism on Equestrian events

Another fascinating page on my beautiful and good city of Versailles , you ought to spent more time here. Even if crowds , of course, it is very popular place after all for the castle:museum but do walk out and see much more in royal and imperial Versailles.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and  many cheers to all!!!

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: