Porte St-Martin

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  • Category: monuments
  • Section: Monuments
Construction of the Porte Saint-Martin immediately followed that of the Porte Saint-Denis in 1674, and it was likewise paid for by the city of Paris. A Latin inscription at the summit of the south façade proclaims, "To Louis the Great, for having vanquished the German, Spanish, and Dutch armies: the Dean of the Guild and the Aldermen of Paris."
View of Porte Saint-Martin from rue St-Martin.

The two bas-reliefs on the south façade represent the taking of Besançon (see Province of Franche-Comté) and Louis XIV in the act of crushing the Triple Alliance. The north façade depicts the taking of Limbourg and the defeat of the Germans.

Although Louis XIV favored living at Versailles, he championed the urban development of Paris, instituting a Department of Roads to ensure that city streets were cleaner and well-lit.

Historical factoid: Saint-Martin once had its own métro stop, situated between Strasbourg-Saint-Denis and République. It was closed at the beginning of World War II (September 2, 1939) and reopened upon the Liberation of Paris (August 25, 1944). However, it was soon shut down again — this time permanently, judged to be too close to its neighboring stations. Saint-Martin is the largest of all closed métro stations in Paris, and still features the old porcelain tiled advertisements on its walls. In recent years, it has been put to use to house some homeless souls during the coldest winter months.

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Today (2 July)
current weather in this location
24.6 ° C
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Tomorrow (3 July)
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23.1 ° C
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