Place de Clichy

In a previous post I showed the same top photo of Place de Clichy and promised to revert with a post about this place. So, here it goes...

Place de Clichy is situated where previously there was a passage in a wall surrounding Paris, called “Fermiers Généraux” (see previous post), which here more or less followed the Boulevard des Batignolles and the Boulevard de Clichy. It was built in the second half of the 18th century, more for commercial than for protection reasons. “Fermiers Généraux” was a corporation of “tax farmers” who collected taxes for the monarchy, including on food, beverages, building material etc. brought into the city – activity stopped immediately after the Revolution. The wall was finally demolished around 1860 at the same time as the villages north of the wall – Montmartre, Batignolles... became part of the City of Paris.

The future Place de Clichy was also the location of a serious battle in 1814, which somehow was the last resistance of the Napoleon Empire where some 15.000 volunteers met a Russian contingent, part of the various armies which attacked France and Paris. The statue in the middle of the place is dedicated to the Marshall, Moncey, who led the resistants. The Place is today where a number of streets meet and also four arrondissements (8th, 9th, 17th, 18th). In the background on the Boulevard de Clichy photo you can find Moulin Rouge (see previous posts). Very close to the Place, on Rue de Clichy, you can find the “Académie de Billard”, which is worth a visit for its fantastic interior decoration... but you have to pay a membership. Just round the corner, on the Avenue de Clichy, is where the café was situated where the impressionist movement was started (see previous post) – now a shoe shop. There is a metro station with a “Guimard entrance” (see previous posts), a number of brasseries and cafés, cinemas... Unfortunately one splendid building is gone, demolished and replaced by a mega-hotel and a small shopping centre in the 1970’s. It was once the biggest cinema in the world (6.000 seats), originally called the Hippodrome, inaugurated in 1900 and transformed to a cinema in 1911, Palace Gaumont. It was also used for other performances, concerts, ballets...

The Place is quite busy. It’s surprising to walk just behind it and find some cobble stone paved, calm streets (Passage de Clichy, Passage Lathuille...).
I cannot avoid giving you some illustrations of how the spring is very slowly progressing in “my” park, Square des Batignolles. I wish you a nice weekend!


Karen said...

Oh, the daffodils are blooming. They do not grow here in Florida.. they grew where I used to live up north and I miss them. A sure sign of Spring.

Cezar and Léia said...

Wonderful yellow in those flowers! By the way Acoor Hotel Network is present all over the world, here in Brazil as well...I mean about the replaced new building called in that picture Ibis Hotel!It`s a pity because the ancient building was much more charming and glamourous, don`t you think ?

krystyna said...

Great photos, great job!

I wish you a nice weekend too!
"Chopin Polonaise" - I dedicated for you!

Anonymous said...

A nightmare of an area to drive through. You have made it look rather wonderful

Carole said...

Bonjour Peter,
Je suis parisienne, née à Paris et grâce à vous, j'ai l'impression de redécouvrir ma ville !
Bravo !

hpy said...

Je vais faire comme le fait si souvent Olivier, et mettre quelques paroles pour illustrer tes photos (de remplacement de building)

C'était un petit jardin
Qui sentait bon le Métropolitain
Qui sentait bon le bassin parisien
C'était un petit jardin
Avec une table et une chaise de jardin
Avec deux arbres, un pommier et un sapin
Au fond d'une cour à la Chaussée-d'Antin

Mais un jour près du jardin
Passa un homme qui au revers de son veston
Portait une fleur de béton
Dans le jardin une voix chanta

De grâce, de grâce, monsieur le promoteur,
De grâce, de grâce, préservez cette grâce
De grâce, de grâce, monsieur le promoteur
Ne coupez pas mes fleurs

C'était un petit jardin
Qui sentait bon le Métropolitain,
Qui sentait bon le bassin parisien
C'était un petit jardin
Avec un rouge-gorge dans son sapin
Avec un homme qui faisait son jardin
Au fond d'une cour à la Chaussée-d'Antin

Mais un jour près du jardin
Passa un homme qui au revers de son veston
Portait une fleur de béton
Dans le jardin une voix chanta

De grâce, de grâce, monsieur le promoteur,
De grâce, de grâce, préservez cette grâce
De grâce, de grâce, monsieur le promoteur
Ne coupez pas mes fleurs

C'était un petit jardin
Qui sentait bon le Métropolitain
A la place du joli petit jardin
Il y a l'entrée d'un souterrain
Où sont rangées comme des parpaings
Les automobiles du centre urbain

C'était un petit jardin
Au fond d'une cour à la Chaussée-d'Antin.
C'était un petit jardin
Au fond d'une cour à la Chaussée-d'Antin.

Olivier said...

je me fais piquer ma chanson du matin, vraiment HPY il y a un certain sans gène ;o)).
Moi ce que j'aime, les comparaisons avant/après, continue Peter. Ton blog va devenir l'encyclopédie de Paris

claude said...

Carole est comme moi, je voie qu'elle aime notre ville.
Paris sera toujours Paris, la Reine du monde.
Jolies fleurs de printemps, ça fait du bien !

Adam said...

Yes, well done Peter - you make a rather dreadful 'place' seem very attractive!

Catherine said...

Je suis heureuse d'en apprendre toujours plus.
Et, moi qui pensait que c'était juste l'emplacement de mon cinéma habituel : )
Oui, Carole, nous en avons vu des films, ensemble, au Wepler !

alice said...

Une petite pause bucolique et fleurie après la balde dans ce quartier animé, que demander de plus? Sinon, peut-être, moins de 4x4 et plus de respect pour les vieux et beaux immeubles...
Bon weekend à toi aussi.

Nathalie H.D. said...

Jolies images de printemps chez toi comme chez moi.
Place Clichy - Ma belle-mère habite tout près de là mais ça reste un quartier que je connais assez mal. Merci pour l'historique du lieu. Tu vas devenir non seulement le guide mais aussi la mémoire de Paris.

Maxime said...

Je me souviens avoir lu "jours tranquilles à Clichy". Je me demande ce que Henry Miller en écrirait auourd'hui...

Ruth said...

The daffodils are out!

Sad about the Hippodrome. You have learned a great deal, not only about the city's layout, architecture, and culture, but also about the history. You must have a vast postcard collection. Or do you find those old black and white images online?

Ash said...

Interesting post! The daffodils are lovely :-)

Thérèse said...

Les murs sont tombés pas les taxes!
Comme des danseuses en tutu sur ta dernière photo en bas à gauche!
Bon week-end Peter!

Anonymous said...

What a pity that this wonderful charming building is gone forever.

Unknown said...

The variety of photos is amazing and I really don't know which set I prefer... Well done, as usual!

Starman said...

It's curious how a lot of cinemas in Paris are closing. There used to be a Gaumont in Italie2 at Place d'Italie which is now gone. The used to brag about having the largest screen in France.

Paris-Insider said...

I love your recap of Paris history; especially the bit about the Hippodrome. Your photos are lovely and informational. Thanks for providing the side-by-side of the Hippodrome and its replacement building. It helps to bring everything into perspective.

Great post!

lyliane six said...

Bel historique pour ce lieu de la naissance de Michel (rue Jacquemond)je vais lui faire lire ton post, car il ne connait rien de sa ville ce "faux parisien"!
Avec le printemps qui revient, j'espère faire un petit tour historique à Paris en ta compagnie prochainement.Bonne fin de semaine.

PeterParis said...

Yes, a sure and nice sign!

César & Léia:
Of course, I agree. Maybe if the decision was taken today, the place would have been saved. Could have been a wonderful concert hall? (Still wondering how and when I can "find" you again. Your blog is desperately empty.)

How nice of you!! I have listened to your son! What a talent, what a wonderful "Polish music"! Very touched by your gesture!

PeterParis said...

Better use a bike, métro, walk... ! :-)

Il faut du temps pour découvrir sa ville! Moi, j'en ai maintenant! :-)

Merci! On va voir si Olivier apprécie!

PeterParis said...

Tu arrives juste un peu trop tard! :-)

Nous sommes nombreux je crois!

It's right, you don't really think about this as a really beautiful place, but anyhow...! :-)

PeterParis said...

Donc, tu n'as pas fréquenté la brasserie du même nom? :-)

C'est vrai que les 4x4 n'ont pas beaucoup à faire à Paris. La mode s'estopme je crois. :-)

J'aimeriai bien rencontrer le printemps dans ton coin! C'est quand' même quelque chose de spéciale! :-)

PeterParis said...

Henry M a vécu non pas trop loin pendant quelques temps, mais dans un coin "pourri" selon lui. Je crois qu'il n'aimait pas trop le quartier. ... mais il avait pourtant quelqeues bons souvenirs! :-)

I have a few, but very few. Mostly found on the net. This one I stole from Adam who had already posted about it.

I guess you can now find them also on the lawns of Cardiff! :-)

PeterParis said...

En effet! :-(
Bien vu pour les danseuses! :-)

Yes, I guess we are many to regret it today!

You don't have to choose! :-)

PeterParis said...

I think that cinemas close also at other places than Paris! Fortunately there are some left! :-)

Thnaks for these compliments by an insider! :-)

Il faudrait peut-être venir avec Michel qui ne connait pas sa ville? :-)

Kate said...

Peter, Very often when I peruse your splendid photos and informative narrative, I have wondered if you are familiar with my all-time favorite book re. Paris, available in French and English. It is entitled _Paris_ by Julian Green. It is a slim volume and an unique book even among the many written about Paris. The late Julian Green was the only American member of the Academie de France. If you are not familiar with it, you might want to find it and read it. I have given a copy to a number of my French friends. Have a good week-end, esp as you walk about in "your park."

Rob said...

Wonderous series of photos. I regret not spending the time ion this part of Paris. Good to see springtime flowers.

Carole said...

Merci Peter pour Victor, et promis, cette année j'irais appareil photo en main à l'aventure!!!

Anonymous said...

J'ai habité un moment près de cette place, en arrivant à Paris en fait et j'adorais cette croisée des mondes entre montmartre, pigalle, la gare saint lazare etc. Je ne sais pas commment est le quartier maintenant mais c'était un endroit vraiment populaire, vraiment parisien....

Eddy said...

c'est un quartier que je connais très bien...
Je fréquente assez souvent l'hippodrome, enfin, le magasin de bricolage de cette place.

Azer Mantessa said...

i was reading and looking at the pictures top down trying to digest everything but once my eyes set on the spring picture, i forgot everything i've read.

ooo man ... had to re-read everything again.

okay, the hippodrome looks a lot more interesting than the new hotel. maybe the hotel looks typical.

interesting cobble stone pasage.

interesting history on the resistance.

Anonymous said...

There is nothing like some photos of Parisian Brasserie to make me want to buy a train ticket. But tell me, what is with that giant key sign? It doesn't have anything to do with the rather unassuming restaurant underneath I expect.

PeterParis said...

No I don't have the book. I have now ordered it! Thanks!

Dusty Lens:
There is so much to see! :-)

Bonne(s) aventure(s)! ;-)

PeterParis said...

Toujours très vivant, très parisien! :-)

J'y étais hier! :-)

I can see that you finally read and understood all of it! :-)

PeterParis said...

The key sign is just there, witness of some abandoned activity I suppose!

Alain said...

Toujours autant de voitures à Paris, à ce que je vois. La place Clichy, j'aime bien, c'est très vivant, il y a plein de choses à voir.

PeterParis said...

Un peu plus qu'à Montpellier?

GMG said...

Hi Peter! Another great post on a quarter you know quite well! And of course, the «Academie de Billard» had to be there and the «Roi des Coquillages» also... ;)
Have a great week!

Marie-Noyale said...

J'ai eu dans la tete le chanson de Julien Clerc en regardant cette belle place...
Quant aux jonquilles du square des Batignolles...je ne dirai qu'un mot...tu en as de la chance!!

Tanya Breese said...

Beautiful and I LOVED the wrap up with the gorgeous spring flowers! I hope you had a nice visit with mom!

Lara said...

it's a beautiful city, full of colour!

PeterParis said...

You seem to know the place well! Not surprised!

Le tabac les lumières
Le Wepler
Et sur la gauche
La rue Caulaincourt
Qui monte vers le cimetière
C'est le ciel qui commande ici... :-)

Thanks, yes everything is fine!

PeterParis said...

It is, indeed! City or light(s)!