Place des Quinconces, Bordeaux
The Girondists monument
The Place des Quinconces in Bordeaux is one of the largest city squares in Europe (at 126 000 m²).
It was built in the early 19th century on the site of the old Château Trompette. The square’s centrepiece is the Girondist monument. It honours the Girondists of the French Revolution (who had a deputy seat in Bordeaux) and the French Republic (even though the Girondists were executed as traitors of the Revolution by the very regime they had helped bring to power).
The 43 m high column (topped with a statue of liberty) and the fountains at its base were built between 1894 and 1902.
It also has sculptures that represent the Republic, the Concorde, the Gallic rooster, History and Éloquence (two people sitting together, probably chatting).
Statues of horses are seen trampling Ignorance, Lie and Vice.
Well, in this photo they seem to be trying to trample me… maybe statues are trying to tell me something.
These bronze statues were dismantled by German soldiers in search of metal during World War II.
The plaque at the base of the monument explains that they were found intact in 1944 in the French city of Angers. They were brought back to Bordeaux. But it wasn’t until the early 1980s that the statues were returned to their pools.
If anyone can shed a light on why it took so long for these bronze statues to be restored to the monument, I would love to know.
We tried asking this guy…
But all he did was smile.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 © Laura Griffin