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Walking Tour of the Marais Neighborhood

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Saint-Paul-Saint-Louis Church
St Paul St Louis Church in Paris
Frederic de Vilamil/Some rights reserved under Creative Commons.
 

Directions:

Turn left and stay on the left side of the street.Walk about a block. You should soon reach the St.Paul-St.-Louis Church, which is located at 99, Rue Saint-Antoine.

Interesting Facts:

  • Commissioned by Louis XIII and completed by 1641, the Church is one of the oldest examples of Jesuit architecture in Paris. The Jesuit style features classical elements such as corinthian pillars and heavy ornamentation.
     
  • The church was inspired by the baroque-style Gesu Church in Rome.
     
  • The current Lycée Charlemagne was once the church convent. In 1763, the Jesuits (a Catholic order prominent during the Renaissance) were expelled from France, and the convent became a school.
     
  • The church features a 195-foot dome. It is best appreciated from the interior because the columns of the three-tiered church facade hide the dome.
     
  • The Cardinal Richelieu gave the church's first mass in 1641.
     
  • The church was pillaged and damaged during the 1789 Revolution. St.-Paul-Saint-Louis briefly served as a "Temple of Reason" under the Revolutionary government, which banned traditional religion.
     
  • Though many artifacts were stolen from the church during the Revolution, some important works were spared. The most impressive is Delacroix' Christ in the Garden of Olives (1827), which can be seen near the entrance.

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