Place du Chatelet Square in Paris

The Place du Chatelet is a square in Paris, that like many others, has a monument in its centre, which is a fountain and statue that commemorates some of the victories Napoleon Bonaparte I had.

About Place du Chatelet Square

The Place du Chatelet is a square located at a major junction between the 1st Arrondissement and the 4th Arrondissement of Paris and yet this was not the case many years ago, as there was an old fortress that stood on the site during the Middle Ages.
Place du Chatelet Paris
The stone fortress known as the Grande Chatelet was erected in the 1100s in order to protect this part of the city and the Grand Pont bridge across the River Seine, but over the years its defensive position was no longer required and it became a prison until it was demolished at the start of the 1800s.

This square in Paris was laid out in approximately 1808 when Napoleon Bonaparte I gave the orders to have a monument and a fountain constructed that would also provide drinking water for its local inhabitants, which you can still see today.

Yet a a few decades later on, and with further development of Paris, there were two identical buildings constructed on either side of the Place du Chatelet, one of which is called the Theatre du Chatelet and the other was called the Theatre Sarah Bernhardt, but is now known as the Theatre de la Ville.

The Fontaine du Chatelet Fountain

The Fontaine du Chatelet is also often referred to as the Fontaine de la Victoire, however it is also sometimes known as the Fontaine du Palmier, and as we previously mentioned was commissioned by Napoleon Bonaparte I in order to provide free drinking water for local residents, but was also to commemorate the French victories he had.

This large fountain in Paris was designed by Francois-Jean Bralle and it has a circular base that is approximately 6 metres in diameter and a column rises from this, which is around 18 metres in height and at the top you will see a gilded figure of the Goddess Victory holding a laurel wreath in each hand.

The gilded figure was sculpted by Louis-Simon Boizot and there are also four figures that represent Prudence, Temeperance, Justice and Strength that encircle the base of the column, which were also produced by the same sculptor.
Place du Chatelet water fountain
Place du Chatelet Victoire statue
At the base of the fountain you will find bronze gilded bands that pay tribute to the victories that Napoleon achieved in the Battle of Ulm, the Battle of Marengo, the Battle of Lodi and the Battle of the Pyramids, plus there are stone sphinxes that commemorate Napoleon’s victory in Egypt.

And having been fully restored at the start of the 1900s and then classified as an historical monument in Paris, the Fontaine du Chatelet fountain still stands today in all its glory for all to admire, while you are discovering this incredible city.

Access to Place du Chatelet Square in Paris

Place du Chatelet Fontaine du Palmier
Located in the 1st Arrondissement of Paris but at the crossroads with the 4th Arrondissement, this square is within easy reach of the Hotel de Ville and the Tour Saint-Jacques Tower.  Plus the Place du Chatelet and the Fontaine de la Victoire Fountain is only a short walk from a bridge over the River Seine called the Pont au Change to the Ile de la Cite where you can discover La Conciergerie and the impressive Notre Dame Cathedral.

And getting to the Place du Chatelet is very easy via the public transport in Paris, as there is one of the busiest underground train stations in Paris located literally underneath the square.  This Metro stop is called Chatelet, which serves the Metro on lines 1, 4, 7, 11 and 14, yet there is also a link to RER trains via the Chatelet - Les Halles stop.