Statue de Bernardin de Saint Pierre, Paris

2.5
#2812 of 2,945 in Things to do in Paris
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  • Adventurer and botanist, he was also administrator of the Jardin des Plantes, inside which is placed his statue
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  • Bernardin de Saint Pierre (1737-1814) is an adventurer, who has experienced various fortunes. He travels without a sequel for his career, but he gets a personal knowledge. He has some wacky ideas, and at last he knows a late literary career. As a botanist, he was also intendant of the garden of plants, in 1790, during the revolution, following Buffon. Which explains his presence here. A time, disciple and friend of Jean Jacques Rousseau, from 1771, he shares with him a pessimism about the world. He is best known as the author of the novel Paul et Virginie, published in 1787, whose history "A l'Eau de Rose" is nothing exceptional. But, its descriptive quality is incomparable, like a master painting. This story takes place in the tropical countries, especially on the Ile de France or Mauritius today, where he lived for a time. This novel will be an immediate, dazzling and international success. Other narratives, equally descriptive and exotic, will follow. He will be elected to the French Academy in 1803. The monument that we see today is located beneath the shadows, in front of the Rotunde of the courier. It is the work of sculptor Louis Holweck (1861-1935). It consists of two bronze parts. At the top of the pedestal, you can see the statue of Bernardin of Saint Peter, in a period costume, sitting on a stone bench, leaning against a dead tree trunk. He looks thoughtful, slightly inclined head resting on his right arm bent. He laid a manuscript case on the bench. On the lower part of the basement, two young people seem to Exchange confidences, the girl has her dog at her feet. These are the characters of his famous novel "Paul and Virginia" that the sculptor wanted to honor. Holweck is a follower of the detail and the work is fulfilled, which gives this sculpture a little Kitch, without lowering the artistic quality. This statue is accessible by metro station "Jussieu" lines n ° 7 and 10 taking the rue Linné, then the rue Geoffroy Saint Hilaire, until the entrance of the garden of plants.
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