Pere Lachaise Cemetery (Cimetiere du Pere Lachaise) is one of the main attractions of Paris. Located in the eastern part of the city, it is better known to its residents as the “Eastern Cemetery” (Cimetière de l'Est) or “the city of the dead” (la cite des morts). Pere Lachaise covers an area of about 48 hectares. This is a real well-planned city with green alleys of old branched trees.
Many come to this quiet and secluded place to take a walk, think about the eternal and forget about time. It is also worth mentioning that this cemetery is considered one of the largest museums of tombstone sculptures. Today, about a million people are buried here, including a large number of celebrities: La Fontaine and Moliere, Pierre Abelard and his student Eloise, Oscar Wilde, Jim Morrison and many others.
Initially, the territory of the cemetery was the area of the poor and criminals. Later, the house of the confessor Louis XIV, François de la Cheza, was located here, after whom the necropolis is now named. And only in 1804 a cemetery appeared here. It was designed by Nicolas Froshaut. At his request, Moliere and La Fontaine, Pierre Abelard and Héloise were reburied here, thanks to which the cemetery began to gain popularity, because initially people refused to bury their relatives here.
The most visited and famous monuments of Père Lachaise
Oscar Wilde's grave
The famous and beloved by many English writer O. Wilde died on 30 and was originally buried in the Bagno cemetery. Then, about 11 years later, his remains were reburied in the Pere Lachaise cemetery.
His grave is decorated with a winged sphinx sculpture by Jacob Epstein. This sculpture is fanned by the legend that by kissing it, you will find eternal love. For this reason, the sphinx on the gravestone of the writer was covered with glass, but this does not stop incorrigible romantics from leaving traces of lipstick here.
Jim Morrison's grave
“Defeat the demon within yourself,” says the legend on the tombstone of the legendary musician, vocalist of The Doors and poet. The singer's grave is in fifth place in terms of attendance, thanks to the frequent visits of loyal fans.
This is one of the noisiest and most crowded places in the cemetery. Quotes from Morrison's songs are written on nearby gravestones, which is why they even wanted to reburial the singer's ashes, but did not do it, because the grave remains one of the most visited, and the rent is regularly paid for it.
Frederic Chopin's grave
This grave is strewn with flowers in memory of the great composer who composed the legendary "Funeral March", under the minor sounds of which most people say goodbye and send their loved ones to another world.
Poles often come here, leaving flowers on the flag of their state. In accordance with the last will of the composer, his heart is kept in one of the churches in Warsaw.
Tomb of Victor Noir
The famous French journalist was killed in a duel with Napoleon Bonaparte's nephew the day before his wedding. During his lifetime, he was adored by women, so his tombstone is adorned with a monument with an erect male organ.
Women believe that, having rubbed the genital organ, you will definitely know the happiness of motherhood, and men come here to regain "masculine strength."
Wall of the Communards
The Wall of the Communards is a monument to the defenders of the Paris Commune, who were shot at one of the walls of the cemetery. 147 people gave their lives here. To perpetuate this event in the memory of the people, a bas-relief was erected by the sculptor A. Bartolome near the cemetery. Today this memorial serves as a symbol of courage, will and the proletarian movement.
Monument to Russian soldiers
On the 60th anniversary of the celebration of the Great Victory, in honor of the participants of the French Resistance, a Monument to Russian soldiers was erected at the Pere Lachaise cemetery. This monument was created by Russian sculptor Vladimir Suvorovtsev.
Monument to the Dead
The monument was erected in honor of those who went to another world. The monument was opened in 1899.
He defined the path of his creator, Albert Bartolomé, as a sculptor. The monument also serves as an ossuary where bones from abandoned graves are kept.
The atmosphere of this place is difficult to convey in words. The variety of monuments, tombstones, family crypts and sculptures is simply amazing. Even more mystery to this legendary place is given by trees, which number about six thousand, and, covering the tombstones, moss. This place is one of the most visited attractions in Paris, which does not leave tourists indifferent. But it is worth thinking about a guided tour, since it is very easy to get lost here, without mentioning the fact that a professional guide will be able to tell you even more interesting facts and secrets of this amazing place.
Address and how to get there
Address: 16 Rue du Repos, Paris 75020
Phone: + 33 1 55 25 82 10
Metro: Père Lachaise