Conciergerie, Paris

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A visit to the city of Paris is something to be planned very carefully, there are so many things not to be missed in the most absolute way.

The French capital, in fact, hosts a huge number of monuments and works of art of great value, not to mention that perhaps the best part of the experience is received simply by walking through the streets and squares of the city and enjoying the wonderful views with the background of the Seine or the Eiffel Tower.

In this context of enormous historical and cultural richness, undoubtedly the magnificent deserves a mention Conciergerie building, inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List and a splendid example of Gothic architecture located in the heart of the French capital.

This is in fact built on the Ile de la Citè, a small island in the Seine that acts as a link, thanks to its beautiful bridges, between the left bank and the right bank, place of the first settlements of the city of Lutetia in the first century BC, which later became Paris.

The topics of Conciergerie, Paris:

  • 1 Historical notes
  • 2 Interior of the Conciergerie
  • 3 Useful Info
    • 3.1 Where is the Concergierie located
    • 3.2 How to get there
  • 4 Timetables and ticket prices
  • 5 Map: what to see nearby

Historical notes

The Conciergerie Palace belongs, together with the Sainte Chapelle church, to the monumental complex of the Palais de la Citè, a royal residence and center of power in France for many centuries.

When King Charles V decided to leave the Palace to move to the Louvre in the XNUMXth century, it assumed a purely legal role. The palace became, in fact, seat of royal justice and an administrator with police powers was appointed, called "Concierge", from which the building itself takes its name.

In the revolutionary era, the Conciergerie assumed the role of court and prison where she was incarcerated, among others, also Maria Antonietta.

A memorial chapel was later erected right next to what was his cell.

The Conciergerie was considered, during the time of the terror of the French Revolution, a very hard prison, in which the cells housed hundreds of prisoners in conditions of overcrowding and poor hygiene, ready to be sentenced to the guillotine.

Interior of the Conciergerie

The interior of the building is made up of different rooms, the largest of which welcomes visitors at the entrance. This is the Hall of the People of Arms (Hall of the People of Arms) built starting from 1302 under Philip the Beautiful and remained intact until today.

It represents a magnificent example of Gothic civil architecture, consisting of four naves and used as a refectory heated by four fireplaces.

The kitchen area, reachable through a short corridor on the right of the room, was built later thanks to the sovereign Giovanni il Buono and is also preserved in its original form.

At the back of the room is La Rue de Paris, an area originally integrated into the room and isolated in the XNUMXth century, used to house the poorest prisoners, those forced to lie down on straw (for this reason called Pailleux).

La Guard room (Sala delle Guardie) is contemporary to the Salle des Gens d'Arms and served as an antechamber for the King's Grand Chamber, on the upper floor, which however no longer exists today. The king's councils and some parliamentary sessions presided over by the sovereign himself took place in this room. In 1793 the revolutionary tribunal was established there.

You cannot say that you have completely visited the Palazzo della Conciergerie if you have not made a trip to the prison area.

In this area there is the "corridor of prisoners”, An area in which the detainees could move freely, is the office of the clerk and that of the concierge as well as the rooms where the detainees were stripped and deprived of their personal belongings before executions.

As mentioned, there is also the cell where Marie Antoinette was held prisoner with an adjoining commemorative chapel, arranged in 1815.

Useful Info

Where is the Concergierie

The entrance to the building is located on Boulevard du Palais, at number 2, about 200 m from the Saint-Michel bridge that connects the Ile de la Citè to the district of the same name on the other bank of the river.

Before or after visiting the Conciergerie it is highly recommended to take a stroll in the narrow streets of Saint-Michel and get lost in the maze of narrow streets that make up the neighborhood, perhaps stopping to admire the beautiful church of Saint-Severin, another majestic example of Parisian Gothic architecture.

How to reach us

Reaching the Palazzo della Conciergerie is very simple: you can get there using different metro lines (line 1, Chatelet station or line 4, Saint-Michel or Citè stations) or Rer B and C with the same reference stations.

For those who prefer to take the bus to enjoy the city on the surface even while traveling, the useful lines are 21, 24, 27, 38, 58, 81, 85, 96 and the Balabus.

Timetable and ticket prices

The Palace can be visited every day, with a few exceptions (January 1st, May 1st and December 25th), from 9.00 to 18.00 with a full entrance ticket of € 8,5. Free admission is provided for young people up to 25 years of age who are citizens of the countries of the European community and for the disabled.

There is also the opportunity to buy a combined ticket for € 15,00 which also allows a visit to the church of Sainte Chapelle, a pearl of Gothic architecture present in the same monumental complex. Entrance tickets are included in the Paris Pass.

For any kind of practical information regarding opening hours, ticket prices and everything concerning the visit, it is however possible to refer to the official website, also available in English and Spanish.

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