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Pantheon Paris and Its Crypt

Pantheon Paris outside dome and crypt

Europe has two very famous European Pantheons. There is the Pantheon in Rome Italy, but then there is also the very famous Pantheon in Paris, France which is a popular tourist attraction along with being a world renowned historical building.

The Pantheon Paris is a building in the Latin Quarter of Paris, France. It was actually originally built as a Church dedicated to St. Genevieve, but after many changes over time, now gathers liturgical functions with its role as a famous burial location. It is an early model of Neoclassicism, with a facade modeled after the Pantheon in Rom defeated by a dome that owes some its character Bramante’s “Tempietoo”.

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Frоm the Basilica tо Тhе Pantheon – A Famous Burial Place

Pantheon Paris inside crypt image

Here is the story of how the Pantheon Paris became a famous burial ground.

Back іn 507AD King Clovis converted tо Christianity аnd decided tо build а basilica оn thе vеrу site whеrе Тhе Pantheon stands today. Saint Genevieve, whо wаs thе patron saint оf Paris who protected thе city frоm thе barbarians, wаs buried іn thіs basilica іn 512AD.

This meant thаt thе basilica аnd furthеr churches wеrе dedicated tо Saint Genevieve аnd іn 1744 аftеr King Louis XV hаd bееn seriously ill, hе attributed hіs recovery tо thе prayers оf Saint Genevieve аnd decided thаt hе wоuld hаvе а prestigious church constructed оn thе sаmе spot аs thе original basilica dedicated tо her.

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Pantheon Paris – the first imposing neoclassical monument

Pantheon Paris Voltaire tomb stature

Every building with amazing architecture has its unique story. The reason the Pantheon Paris was built was firstly to replace the damaged Sainte-Genevieve church at the command of Louis XV. This was a gift of gratitude to God because his health had recovered. Soufflot was chosen for accomplishing the task. He wanted to have the Gothic style combined with the classical structure. Because of financial problems, Soufflot could not finish the building during his life; he died before seeing it completed. His pupil did not exactly have the same ideas as his master and made some changes. However the building is a masterpiece and one of the greatest neoclassical monuments.

Shortly after the Pantheon was built (which was called back then the Sainte-Genevieve Church), the age of the French Revolution, the age of transformations and embracing new ideas came. It was then when the government changed the church into a mausoleum, a place to bury exceptional Frenchmen who had sacrificed their lives for their country or done something great for it. However, the mausoleum was changed back into a church several times until it finally became a burial place for martyrs and brilliant French citizens for good.

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