14th July (’22): Bastille Day – French national holiday

Bastille Day is the common name given in English-speaking countries to the national day of France, which is celebrated on 14 July each year. In French, it is formally called Fête nationale française (French: [fɛt nasjɔnal]; “French National Celebration”), and legally le 14 juillet (French: [lə katɔʁz(ə) ʒɥijɛ]; “the 14th of July”).

The French National Day is the anniversary of the Storming of the Bastille on 14 July 1789, a major event of the French Revolution, as well as the Fête de la Fédération that celebrated the unity of the French people on 14 July 1790. Celebrations are held throughout France. One that has been reported as “the oldest and largest military parade in Europe” is held on 14 July on the Champs-Élysées in Paris in front of the President of the Republic, along with other French officials and foreign guests.

In 1789, tensions rose in France between reformist and conservative factions as the country struggled to resolve an economic crisis. In May, the Estates General legislative assembly was revived, but members of the Third Estate broke ranks, declaring themselves to be the National Assembly of the country, and on 20 June, vowed to write a constitution for the kingdom.

On 11 July Jacques Necker, the Finance Minister of Louis XVI, who was sympathetic to the Third Estate, was dismissed by the king, provoking an angry reaction among Parisians. Crowds formed, fearful of an attack by the royal army or by foreign regiments of mercenaries in the king’s service, and seeking to arm the general populace. Early on 14 July one crowd besieged the Hôtel des Invalides for firearms, muskets, and cannons, stored in its cellars. That same day, another crowd stormed the Bastille, a fortress-prison in Paris that had historically held people jailed on the basis of lettres de cachet (literally “signet letters”), arbitrary royal indictments that could not be appealed and did not indicate the reason for the imprisonment, and was believed to hold a cache of ammunition and gunpowder. As it happened, at the time of the attack, the Bastille held only seven inmates, none of great political significance.

The crowd was eventually reinforced by mutinous Régiment des Gardes Françaises (“French Guards”), whose usual role was to protect public buildings. They proved a fair match for the fort’s defenders, and Governor de Launay, the commander of the Bastille, capitulated and opened the gates to avoid a mutual massacre. According to the official documents, about 200 attackers and just one defender died before the capitulation. However, possibly because of a misunderstanding, fighting resumed. In this second round of fighting, de Launay and seven other defenders were killed, as was Jacques de Flesselles, the prévôt des marchands (“provost of the merchants”), the elected head of the city’s guilds, who under the feudal monarchy also had the competences of a present-day mayor.

Shortly after the storming of the Bastille, late in the evening of 4 August, after a very stormy session of the Assemblée constituante, feudalism was abolished. On 26 August, the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen (Déclaration des Droits de l’Homme et du Citoyen) was proclaimed.

♬ Francesco Gabbani – Peace & Love

LYRIC

Don’t smoke it
I fiori sopra i prati, non fumare
No woman, no cry
La donna d’altri non desiderare
Leitmotiv
Fatti non foste a viver come bruti
Uomini fatti dei
E strafottenti a fare due starnuti
Come stai? Come sto?
Non lo sai, non lo so
Cosa fai? Dove vai?
Non si può
Che tutto l’oro del mondo
Non vale neanche un secondo
Compare all’orizzonte
Nemico comandante
Che spara dritto in fronte
Urlando al “Rock & Roll”
Risponde lo sciamano
Fedele capo indiano
Non vedi che ti amo? (amo, amo)
Ti canto “Peace & Love” (oh)
Ti canto “Peace & Love”
Love, love, love, love, love, love, love, love
Ramadan
Non mangio intelligenza artificiale
Nuova libertà
Un po’ è natura, un po’ è stupidità
Moonwalking
È una teoria per allacciar le stringhe
Don’t let’s twist again
Vite clonate dentro alle siringhe
Come stai? Come sto?
Non lo sai, non lo so
Cosa fai? Dove vai?
Non si può
Che tutto l’oro del mondo
Non vale neanche un secondo
Compare all’orizzonte
Nemico comandante
Che spara dritto in fronte
Urlando al “Rock & Roll”
Risponde lo sciamano
Fedele capo indiano
Non vedi che ti amo? (amo, amo)
Ti canto “Peace & Love” (oh)
Ti canto “Peace & Love”
Ti canto “Peace & Love” (oh)
Ti canto “Peace & Love”
La nebbia agli irti colli
Dato il mortal sospiro
Si sta come d’autunno
Nei prati dell’emiro
Alla fine del mondo
Chi sono non lo so
So solo che ti amo
Ti canto “Peace & Love” (oh)
Ti canto “Peace & Love” (oh)
Ti canto “Peace & Love”
Love, love, love
Compare all’orizzonte
Nemico comandante
Che spara dritto in fronte
Urlando al “Rock & Roll”
Risponde lo sciamano
Fedele capo indiano
Non vedi che ti amo?
Ti canto “Peace & Love” (oh)
Ti canto “Peace & Love”
Ti canto “Peace & Love” (oh)
Ti canto “Peace & Love”
Ti canto “Peace & Love”
Love, love, love

Five views of the Louvre at dusk — Don’t hold your breath

That summer evening I thought of taking photos of the pyramid at Louvre lit up from below. In summers the Louvre shuts down long before the light fades from the sky. When I reached the square I found that my imagined photos were every photographer’s dream. There were barriers set up halfway across the square, […]

Five views of the Louvre at dusk — Don’t hold your breath

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #207 – Seeing Double — Journeys with Johnbo

Pelicans grooming. This week it’s Jez Braithwaite’s turn to guest host the July “Guest Fest”. I’ve been following Jez for some time and he introduced me to Lensy, his crystal lens ball. It led me to go out and get my own “Lensy.” For the challenge this week, Jez writes, “Now it’s your turn to […]

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #207 – Seeing Double — Journeys with Johnbo