Adolphe Thiers

Adolphe Thiers (1797-1877) was a young lawyer, writer, journalist.., very ambitious and with a wish for a political career. Without fortune, he was helped by his (older) wealthy married mistress, Eurydice Dosne. A marriage with her daughter Elise (16 years old) was arranged. Thiers could buy the Dosne family home, Place Saint George. He was heavily involved in the 1830 “July Revolution” which overthrew King Charles X and brought Louis Philippe to the throne. He served several times as Prime Minister. He was again involved in the 1848 Revolution, which established the Second French Republic, but lasted only until 1852, when Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte declared himself Emperor, Napoléon III… and Thiers became an opponent. In 1870-71 the French suffered the war with the Prussians, Napoléon III had to leave, Thiers was elected chief executive of the new French government and negotiated the end of the war. The French Commune seized power in March 1871… and Thiers gave the order for its suppression, meaning a lot of fighting in the Paris streets and thousands of victims. He was named President of the new Third Republic. He resigned two years later. Here are some portraits of him.

His home was destroyed by the “communards”.  Thiers managed to get State money to rebuild, actually to something larger and nicer. Here we can see what the mansion looked like before 1871 … and after destruction.

The reconstructed home (1873) is still there. The garden has now become a public park. 

Thiers spent only a few years here as he died in 1877, soon followed by his wife and the house was then occupied by the wife’s younger sister. It was bequeathed to the “Institut de France” (the French Academies) in 1905. It’s now a foundation ("Fondation Dosne-Thiers") and holds especially a history library, specializing in the period from the French Revolution to WWI.

Some views from the inside, first the stairs…

There is very little furniture left, except in one room, where you can also find some Thiers “souvenirs”.

Thiers was a great reader… and author of historical works. He was actually already elected member of the French Academy at the age of 36. One large room is full of books.

On an upper floor is the real library, open to the public. The collection of historical works is unique. A lot was of course lost when the “communards” destroyed the previous building, but the collection has grown considerably over the years.

One quite empty large room is today used for conferences, concerts…

On the ground floor there are a number of reception rooms, today available for special events.


Creamcheese said...

Ah! M.Peter
Another wonderful post full of informative Parisian history,lavish interiors and architecture and beautiful green spaces.
It's a absolutey delicious to see this grand library full of beautiful antique books!
Where would the world be without prolific reader's and books!

claude said...

Photographe de Paris et historien, hein Peter !
Très intéressante cette publication.

SusuPetal said...

Så underbara rum! Kanske litet för dekorerad i min smak, men vackert!

Anonymous said...

M.Thiers's must have been of a great conciliatory nature! First the mother and then the daughter! And that "generous" Mme. Dosne sacrificing her daughter. What a pair!

Many things caught my eye in this fantastic post. I was enchanted to see M. Thiers's uniform. Was he at one time a Grand Marshal of Louis Philippe's court? Or that uniform is a court or a diplomatic one? You don't miss a thing, eh?

What a beautiful house! Are those walls along the main staircase made of marble?

Mil gracias M. Peter.

PeterParis said...

> Maria: Thanks for your always kind comments.
The uniform is the one he used as member of the Academy.
Partly real marble, partly just painted...