Thursday, 18 May 2017

Paris Day 7

Today we headed out with our timed tickets to see the Louvre. I must admit that when I visited Paris with Kevin years ago the queues did turn us off going to the museum. However today was the day for me to enter the world of history and exploration. We arrived about 8.40 for our 9am entry and we were through the security and in the museum within about 10 minutes so no queues for us. The size of the museum is mind blowing and even though yes there are thousands of people here on any one day they disperse to all the different galleries and it is not as bad as I expected.

After we were inside the museum we made our way to the Mona Lisa to avoid the crowds and were lucky enough to be able to get right in front of her for viewing and photos. This was not the case even about 10 minutes later so our timing was perfect.

We then viewed the Paintings of France from 1780 -1850.

The history of the louvre itself is quite interesting. The museum is housed in the Louvre Palace, originally built as a fortress in the late 12th century under Philip II. Remnants of the fortress are visible in the basement of the museum. Due to the urban expansion of the city, the fortress eventually lost its defensive function and, in 1546, was converted by Francis I into the main residence of the French Kings. The building was extended many times to form the present Louvre Palace. In 1682, Louis XIV chose the Palace of Versailles for his household, leaving the Louvre primarily as a place to display the royal collection, including, from 1692, a collection of ancient Greek and Roman sculpture. In 1692, the building was occupied by the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles Lettres and the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture, which in 1699 held the first of a series of salons.

The Académie remained at the Louvre for 100 years. During the French Revolution, the National Assembly decreed that the Louvre should be used as a museum to display the nation's masterpieces.
The museum opened on 10 August 1793 with an exhibition of 537 paintings, the majority of the works being royal and confiscated church property. Because of structural problems with the building, the museum was closed in 1796 until 1801. The collection was increased under Napoleon and the museum renamed Musée Napoléon, but after Napoleon's abdication many works seized by his armies were returned to their original owners. The collection was further increased during the reigns of Louis XVIII and Charles X, and during the Second French Empire the museum gained 20,000 pieces. Holdings have grown steadily through donations and bequests since the Third Republic. The collection is divided among eight curatorial departments: Egyptian Antiquities; Near Eastern Antiquities; Greek, Etruscan and Roman Antiquities; Islamic Art; Sculpture; Decorative Arts; Paintings; Prints and Drawings.

The Winged Victory of Samothrace also called the Nike of Samothrace, is a marble Hellenistic sculpture of Nike (the Greek goddess of victory), that was created about the 2nd century BC.

Cycladique 2700 - 2300

Mycenion 1360

Idole Cloche 700

Seated Figure 550


The ceiling are just breathtaking

Grand Sphinx

Cybele 300 - 200

Hecate 300 - 250

Venus de Milo

Aphrodite 370 - 330


Gilded Bronze 1852 - 1870

Artemis 1556

Marie Madeleine

Diana 1799

Marie Madeleine 1400 - 1430

Anna and the Virgin 1631 - 1644

The Young Bride 1672 - 1681

Holy Family 1592-1660

The Three Graces 1831

Vestal devoted to Vesta 1787

Looking up out of the pyramid of the Louvre

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