The place de la Nation is a square in Paris, on the border of the 11th and 12th arrondissements. It was renamed the Place de la Nation at the national festivities of 14 July 1880 and is served by the Paris Metro station Nation.
Ancien Regime :
The city bears traces of the mur des Fermiers généraux built well beyond the buildings of Paris in a campaign to encircle houses, gardens and monasteries. Its construction left a vast grassy space of vines and market gardens as far as the medieval city wall and the walls of the gardens of the old village of Picpus
, filled with major convents, schools and retreats. A throne was erected in this space on 26 July 1660 for the solemn arrival of Louis XIV and Maria Theresa of Spain
following their marriage in Saint-Jean-de-Luz. This gave the square its original name of place du Trône.
Originally the square housed two pavilions and two columns of the barrière du Trône designed by Claude Nicolas Ledoux and built for the barrier of octroi (Mur des Fermiers généraux) which surrounded the entrance to the cours de Vincennes
. The columns are surmounted by statues of kings Philip II and Louis IX.
French Revolution :
During the Revolution, the square was renamed place du Trône-Renversé after 10 August 1792. A guillotine was built n the southern half of the square, near the pavilion of law built by Ledoux. Those guillotined here are buried at cimetière de Picpus and include:
- André-Marie Chénier, 25 July 1794.
- Cécile Renault, Henri Admirat and Jean-Baptiste Michonis, 17 June 1794.
- Josse-François-Joseph Benaut, composer, 13 July 1794.
- The Martyrs of Compiègne, Carmelite nuns, 17 July 1794