Panorama from the Pont des Arts

From the Pont des Arts the beautiful view evokes Protestant Paris during the reign of Henri IV.

  • Panorama from the Pont des Arts © Fondation Bersier (Thibault Godin 2016)

First the Pont Neuf, then the Place Dauphine built under Henri IV, and finally the 1818 equestrian statue of Henri IV. It replaced the one erected four years after he died which was melted down during the Revolution in 1792.

The institute was turned into the French Academy by Richelieu. It was originally a literary salon run by the Protestant Valentin Conrart. The Institute of France was created by the Convention and has been housed in the building due to a legacy from Mazarin since 1806.

Despite its name the Pont Neuf is the oldest bridge in Paris. Its foundation stone was laid by Henri III in 1578. The construction was necessary after the development of the Faubourg Saint-Germain and the expansion of the city westward. The project of the Protestant architect Androuët du Cerceau was adopted for the first arch.

Upon Henri III’s assassination the work stopped, was resumed under Henri IV in 1598 and completed in 1606.

Jacques I Androuët du Cerceau was born in 1515 and died in 1585. He was the first of a dynasty of architects being the father of Jacques II Androuët du Cerceau and of Baptiste Androuët du Cerceau, and the grandfather of Salomon de Brosse. Jacques I is known primarily for his book ‘Dessins des excellents bâtiments de France’ (Drawings of the excellent buildings in France). He worked on the Château de Neuilly, on the Renaissance wing of Fontainebleau castle and on the Groslot private mansion in Orléans.

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Panorama from the Pont des Arts

75001 Pont des Arts, Paris, France

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