/ / Porte Saint-Martin: photo description (Porte Saint-Martin)

Porte Saint-Martin: photo description (Porte Saint-Martin)

Porte Saint-Martin is, in fact, another Paris triumphal arch erected in 1674 to commemorate military victories of Louis XIV. They are on the Boulevard Saint-Denis a short distance (140 meters) from the gates of Saint-Denis. Such a close location of two very similar buildings looks a bit strange.

The topography explains the history. In 1358, Charles V, and later Louis XIII, in an effort to expand Paris, moved further away from the center of its medieval ramparts. In Paris then entered only through special gates with drawbridges. Two gates were located on the future Boulevard Saint-Denis: there was then the city wall. Already under Louis XIV, the wall was demolished, and a gate, similar to small castles, survived. During the Dutch war, the king ordered to turn them into triumphant passages on the model of Roman.

With respect to the gate Saint-Martin, this problem was solved by the architect Pierre Bull. He designed the gates in rough manly rustic style. The construction is of a square shape (17 meters high and 17 in wide). The bas-reliefs - works-Martin-Desjardins, Etienne Lehongre and Pierre Legros.

The construction of the gate was dedicated to the victories of the king in Belgium. In the upper part of the South-facing facade with gold embossed: "Louis the Great, because he twice took besançon and Franche-Comte and defeated the German, Spanish and Dutch armies, from the merchant, and Provost of asemenov of Paris. On the bas-relief dedicated to the capture of besançon, sitting Louis takes the keys to the city, hovers over him Glory. The bas-relief dedicated to the victory over anti-French Union, represents the king in the image of Hercules - the half-naked (great body), with the Mace, but in the lush wig.

Porte Saint-Martin and Saint-Denis became the prototype for a Grand triumphal arches of Napoleon. However, under these majestic buildings in the days of the victories were not only French troops. At noon on March 31, 1814, the Russian army led by Emperor Alexander I entered Paris through the Porte Saint Martin.