Panthéon, where History is buried

Text: Claire Lessiau
Photographs: Marcella van Alphen

Strolling through the Latin quarter on the left bank of Paris, and coming out of the Luxembourg Gardens, the unexpected neoclassical architecture of the Panthéon attracts the attention.

The French king Louis XV recovered from an illness and to thank the Lord he decided to have a church to honor Sainte Geneviève, the protector of Paris, built on top of the hill bearing her name. However, the construction (1758, 1790) was not completed before the start of the French Revolution (1789). The imposing structure was turned into a mausoleum: a burial place for Frenchmen or women who did something extraordinary for France. It has served multiple purposes over the years, but now it remains a burial site for France’s most outstanding poets, scientists and writers.

Voltaire, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Victor Hugo, Louis Antoine de Bougainville, Emile Zola, Louis Braille, Jean Moulin, Antoine de Saint Exupéry, Pierre & Marie Curie, Alexandre Dumas Sr., Simone Veil are some of the eminent figures buried in Le Panthéon.

Travel tips:

  • Check out this interactive map for the specific details to help you plan your trip and more articles and photos (zoom out) about the area (short tutorial)!


For more in Paris, click on these images:


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s