vrijdag 23 oktober 2009

The château Saint-Cloud

The château was declared a bien national and emptied by the Revolutionary sales.

The Saint-Cloud orangery was the setting for the coup d'état of 18 Brumaire (10 November 1799),
in which the Directoire was suppressed and the Consulat declared. Less than five years later, Napoléon Bonaparte was proclaimed as Emperor of the French on 18 May 1804 at Saint-Cloud. Saint-Cloud was later used by Bonaparte's family and was their main seat along with the Palais des Tuileries in Paris.

19th century
The ruins in 1871 Napoleon made Saint-Cloud his preferred residence and transformed the Salon de Vénus to a throne room, which Saint-Cloud had naturally lacked, but neither he nor the occupants to follow did much more to Saint-Cloud than works of interior decoration. When the Prussians captured it in 1814, they supposedly found Altdorfer's The Battle of Alexander at Issus hanging in the Emperor's bathroom.

It was at Saint-Cloud once again, in Monsieur's Galerie d'Apollon, that Napoléon III invested himself as Emperor of the French on 1 December 1852. During the Second Empire, Napoléon III and empress Eugénie held court at Saint-Cloud in the spring and the autumn. Napoléon III had the orangery demolished in 1862, and Eugénie transformed the bedroom of Madame into a salon in Louis XVI style.

At Saint-Cloud, Napoléon III declared war on Prussia on 28 July 1870. The heights dominating Paris were occupied by the Prussians during the siege of Paris, who shelled Paris from the grounds of the château. Counter-fire from the French hit the building, and it caught fire and burned out on 13 October 1870. Fortunately, much of its contents had been removed by Empress Eugénie after war was declared.
The burnt-out shell.The standing roofless walls were finally razed in 1891. The pediment of the château's right wing, one of the preserved parts of the building, was bought by Ferdinand I of Bulgaria and integrated in his palace Euxinograd on the Black Sea coast.
Today, only a few outbuildings and its park of 460 hectares remains, constituting the Domaine national de Saint-Cloud. It includes the garden à la française designed by Le Nôtre, Marie-Antoinette's flower garden (where roses for the French state are grown), a garden à l'anglaise from the 1820s (the Trocadéro garden), ten fountains, and a viewpoint of Paris known as "la lanterne", because a lantern was lit there when the Emperor Napoléon I was in residence.

The Pavillon de Breteuil in the park has been the home of the General Conference on Weights and Measures since 1875.

20th century
France crowning Art and Industry, by Élias RobertThe sculpture group France crowning Art and Industry was installed in the lower part of the park in 1900.
Many thousands of trees in the park were knocked down or badly damaged in a storm on 26 December 1999, but restoration work continues.

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