Rebuilding the Tuileries?

16 July 2010

While researching the Tuileries, I was fascinated to learn that a committee was set up in 2003 to discuss plans to rebuild the palace, which was burned during the days of the Paris Commune on 23rd May 1871 and then finally demolished in 1883.

There’s a lot of controversy about the plans, with a lot of people thinking that Paris has done perfectly well without the Tuileries in the intervening years but others arguing that it would be of benefit to the city and would also be an excellent place to house yet more of the Louvre’s treasures. The fact that the rebuilding work will probably cost around 300 million Euros is also a major consideration, but then again when set against the £9 billion that is being squandered by my own allegedly beleagured British government on the stupid London Olympics while they cut public spending on things that really matter, it seems like a drop in the proverbial ocean.

I was fascinated (and relieved!) to learn that all of the furniture, paintings and objets d’art kept in the Tuileries were rescued from the fires and have been kept in storage ever since, never being displayed to the public. If the Tuileries were rebuilt then they could be housed in their original homes and shown off at last, which I must confess I would very much love to see.

Am now wondering about the French royal paintings that have been hidden away from public eyes for so long. Just imagine what might be lurking in those warehouses – lost portraits of Louis XIV, Marie Antoinette and their families. Who knows?

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