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Rue de Rivoli

Coordinates: 48°51′24.90″N 2°21′13.22″E / 48.8569167°N 2.3536722°E / 48.8569167; 2.3536722
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Rue de Rivoli
Street plate
Rue de Rivoli is located in Paris
Rue de Rivoli
Shown within Paris
NamesakeBattle of Rivoli
Length3,070 m (10,070 ft)
Width20.78 m (68.2 ft) along the Jardin des Tuileries; 22 m elsewhere
Arrondissement1st, 4th
QuarterSaint-Germain l'Auxerrois. Halles. Palais Royal. place Vendôme. Saint-Merri. Saint-Gervais.
Coordinates48°51′24.90″N 2°21′13.22″E / 48.8569167°N 2.3536722°E / 48.8569167; 2.3536722
From45 rue François Miron and 1 rue de Sévigné
Toplace de la Concorde and 2 rue Saint-Florentin
CompletionMay 3, 1848
DenominationApril 25, 1804

Rue de Rivoli (French pronunciation: [ʁy ʁivɔli]; English: "Rivoli Street") is a street in central Paris, France. It is a commercial street whose shops include leading fashionable brands.[citation needed] It bears the name of Napoleon's early victory against the Austrian army, at the Battle of Rivoli, fought on 14–15 January 1797.[citation needed] Developed by Napoleon through the heart of the city, it includes on one side the north wing of the Louvre Palace and the Tuileries Gardens.


The Rue de Rivoli is an example of a transitional compromise between an environment of prestigious monuments and aristocratic squares, and the results of modern town-planning by municipal authorities.

Rue de Rivoli between the north wing of the Louvre Palace (left) and the Louvre Saint-Honoré building (right)
The same spot in 1900
Rue de Rivoli as it runs through Le Marais, in Paris' 4th arrondissement

The new street that Napoleon developed through the heart of Paris includes on one side the north wing of the Louvre Palace, (which Napoleon extended) and the Tuileries Gardens. Upon completion, it was the first time that a wide, well designed and aesthetically pleasing street bound the north wing of the Louvre Palace. Napoleon's original section of the street opened up eastward from the Place de la Concorde. Builders on the north side of the Place Louis XV, (as it then was named) between the Rue de Mondovi and Rue Saint-Florentin, had been constrained by letters patent in 1757 and 1758 to follow a single façade plan. The result was a pleasing uniformity, and Napoleon's planners extended a similar program, which resulted in the arcades and facades that extend for almost a mile along the street.[citation needed]

The restored Bourbon King Charles X continued the Rue de Rivoli eastwards from the Louvre, as did King Louis-Philippe. Finally, Emperor Napoleon III extended it into the 17th-century quarter of Le Marais (see: Right Bank). Beneath the Rue de Rivoli runs one of the main brick-vaulted, oval-sectioned sewers of Paris' much-imitated system, with its sidewalks for the sewer workers.[citation needed]

In 1852, opposite the wing of the Louvre, Baron Haussmann enlarged the Place du Palais-Royal that is centred on the baroque Palais Royal, built for Cardinal Richelieu in 1624 and willed to the royal family, with its garden surrounded by fashionable commercial arcades. At the rear of the garden is the older branch of the Bibliothèque Nationale, in the Rue Richelieu.[citation needed]

North of the Rue de Rivoli, at the point where the Grands Boulevards crossed an enormous new square, the new opera house was built. The Opera Garnier is a monument to the construction of the Second Empire. Just behind the opera house can be found the largest department stores, such as the Galeries Lafayette and Printemps.[citation needed]

East along the Rue de Rivoli, at the Place des Pyramides, is the gilded statue of Joan of Arc, situated close to where she was wounded at the Saint-Honoré Gate in her unsuccessful attack on English-held Paris, on September 8, 1429. A little further along, towards the Place de la Concorde, the Rue de Castiglione leads to the Place Vendôme, with its Vendôme Column surmounted by the effigy of Napoleon Bonaparte. He began the building of the street in 1802; it was completed in 1865. A plaque at no. 144 commemorates the assassination there of the Huguenot leader Admiral Gaspard II de Coligny, in the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre of 1572.[citation needed]

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