The Equestrian Statue of King Henri IV

Located on the Ile de la Cite, you will be able to discover that the equestrian statue of King Henri IV is actually a replica of the original dating from the 1600s, however, this particular statue was still put in place in 1818 and is one of the many monuments in Paris that you can discover today.

About the Equestrian Statue of King Henri IV in Paris

The original sculpture was commissioned by Marie de Medici way back in the 1600s, which means if you have any interest on its background, you may want to find out about the history of the equestrian statue of King Henri IV that is quite fascinating in itself.
Equestrian Statue of King Henri IV
However, the bronze statue that you can still see today, which is classified as an historical monument in Paris, is actually a replica of the original, and this was only put in place in 1818 during the Restoration, after the French Revolution.

But we are getting ahead of ourselves here

In fact, the original statue called the Statue Equestre d'Henri IV in French, was melted down in 1792 during the French Revolution, although the four Captives, as they are known, are the sculptures which were spared and can now be seen within the Musee du Louvre Museum.

But after the Restoration of the Bourbon Monarchy, it was decided that several particular monuments in Paris would be replicated or restored to their former glory, and the equestrian statue of King Henri IV was one of these, and the very first one to be reconstructed.
So, this particular bronze statue was commissioned to Francois-Frederic Lemot who made an exact copy of the original statue depicting King Henri IV riding in his armour on his trusted horse and this was put back in place on the intersection of the Pont Neuf Bridge on the Ile de la Cite in 1818.

Now this bronze equestrian statue in Paris sits on top of a large marble base or pedestal, and on two sides there are bas reliefs.  The first depicts King Henri IV arriving in Paris, and the second depicts him providing food to the citizens of Paris, which is why he was often referred to as the Good King Henry, and it was one of his feelings that no person in his kingdom should go without.

However, on the opposite sides are also two inscriptions.  On one of the inscriptions at the very top it reads Henri The Great, which is what he was often referred to as, plus at the bottom of the inscription there are Roman numerals stating 1818, which is when this replica bronze statue was put back in place.

Visiting the Equestrian Statue of King Henri IV

This is of course one of the many different equestrian statues in Paris that you can visit, yet it is located on the very historical Ile de la Cite island where the famous and oldest bridge in Paris meets, which is called the Pont Neuf.  In fact it was King Henri IV himself that named this the New Bridge, which is what it translates to in English, as it was the very first one constructed without houses.
Statue of King Henri IV on Pont Neuf
Statue of King Henri IV on horse
And located towards the western tip of the island it is between the Place Dauphine, which was named after his son the future King Louis XIII and the Square du Vert Galant, which is aptly named after King Henri IV with his many mistresses.

You will find the equestrian statue of King Henri IV in the 1st Arrondissement of Paris on the Ile de la Cite, and you would reach this via walking over the Pont Neuf Bridge or one of the other bridges that connect to the Ile de la Cite such as the Pont au Change or the Pont de l’Archeveche at the opposite end of the island.

When it come to reaching this monument via public transport, the nearest Metro stations are Pont Neuf stop serving line 7 or the Cite stop via line 4, yet if you are travelling on the RER trains, you would need the Saint-Michel - Notre Dame stop, which serves the RER B and RER C lines that can be accessed via the bridge over the River Seine called the Pont Saint Michel.

However, you can also reach this particular monument and landmark in Paris via bus lines 21, 24, 27, 38, 47, 58, 69, 70, 72, 74, 75, 81, 85 and 96 along with the Noctilien Night Bus Service via lines N12, N13, N14, N15, N16, N21, N22 that are all within easy walking distance.

Alternatively, there is the Batobus, which is the water bus that has one of its stops on the bank opposite Notre Dame Cathedral, yet there are also tour buses like l’OpenTour that also have a stop close by.