Edward VII Monument (Montreal)
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|Edward VII Monument|
|Height||14 metres (46 ft)|
|Opening date||October 1, 1914|
|Dedicated to||Edward VII|
The monument to King Edward VII, by Louis-Philippe Hébert, was erected in Phillips Square, in face of Morgan's, in 1914. The monument was unveiled by the Governor General of Canada, with a huge crowd in attendance, on October 1, 1914. Edward VII visited Montreal in 1860, when he was still the Prince of Wales, to open the Victoria Bridge.
Four allegorical figures — Peace, Four Nations, Abundance, and Liberty — sit at the base of the monument. Peace, the woman at the front holding the olive branch, keeps a sword hidden in the folds of her skirt, just in case. Four Nations, the western group, represents Montreal’s four founding nationalities — French, Scots, Irish, and English — living together in harmony. At the back of the monument, Winged Genius, represents Liberty. The angel has broken the shackles of religious prejudice and persecution and is a reminder that during the king’s reign he extended respect and dignity to all his subjects around the world, regardless of race, colour, or creed. And the eastern face, Abundance, represents Canada's material prosperity.
Phillips Square was carved out of property that initially belonged to fur trader Joseph Frobisher, one of the founding partners of the North West Company, and named, for Thomas Phillips, a building contractor and city councillor who bought the land from Frobisher. When Phillips died, his widow donated the property to be used a perpetual memorial to her husband.