字幕表 動画を再生する 英語字幕をプリント Welcome to the Arc de Triomphe; one of Paris and France's most famous monuments. The Arc is located in the middle of Place de Gaulle, the large circular square and the biggest traffic center in Paris. The place, previously known as "Place de l'Etoile", is also called "the Star Square", due to the fact that no less than twelve streets emanates from it. Standing at the end of Champs-Elysées, the Arc is said to link the old Paris and the new Paris, as it is situated between the Louvre on one side, and the financial district with its skyscrapers on the other side. So why was the Arc de Triomphe built in the first place? Not surprisingly, it was built in order to honor military victories. It was commissioned by Emperor Napoleon after his decisive victory of the Russo-Austrian army in the battle of Austerlitz in 1806. As this was during the peak of his fortunes, Napoleon wanted something to honor, not only the victory at Austerlitz, but also his previous victories. The construction of the Arc began quickly, but the construction process proved to be a long one. Laying the foundations alone took two years. Napoleon never got to see the Arc finished, due to his defeat in the battle of Waterloo 1815. After Napoleon lost the battle, he was forced to surrender his throne, and the victorious Coalition force which defeated him installed Louis XVIII in his place. The new king had Napoleon exiled and the construction of the Arc stopped. The construction later began again in 1833 during the reign of Louis-Philippe and was completed 1836. The result is what you can see today; a near 50m high and 45m wide masterpiece. It is one of the largest Arc of Triumph in the world, placing second, only beaten by the Arc in Pyongyang, North Korea. The monument was designed by the French architect Jean Chalgrin in 1806. Chalgrin later died in 1811, and during the construction process a number of other architects carried out his work. The design of the Arc is inspired by the Roman Arch of Titus, located in Rome, but in a more Neo-classical style. As you can see, the Arc is stacked with wonderful reliefs and sculptures. If you take a look on the outside of the arc, above the large vault, you will see the richly sculptured frieze of soldiers which pictures scenes from various battles. Among them are Napoleons victory over the Turkish in the battle of Aboukir and when Napoleon defeated the Austrians during the Battle of Austerliz. Above this, you can see a row of shields. These shields honor the major Revolutionary and Napoleonic military victories, as each one of the 30 shields carries the name of a specific battle. If you later take a look at the inside walls of the Arc, you will see a long list of names. This list is the names of French generals. If you look closely, you will see that some of the names are underlined. This indicates that the general died in battle. Also inscribed, on the shorter sides of the four supporting columns, are the names of the major battles of the Napoleonic Wars. The most prominent feature of the Arc is however the large statues which rests at the base of the columns. If you're looking from Champs-Elysées, you will have the most famous one on the right side; "Departure of the Volunteers of '92" commonly called "La Marseillaise". This sculpture was made by François Rude and depicts the French people rallying against enemies from abroad. The citizens, who you can see is it both nude and in classical armor, are united under the Roman goddess of war, Bellona. One the left side you can see "The Triumph", made by Jean-Pierre Cortot. In the middle you will see Napoleon, as he just conquered another town who surrenders at his feet. You will also see the Roman goddess of victory, Victoria, crowning Napoleon with a crown of wreath. In the back you can also see a historian, inscribing his new conquering into a stone tablet. On the opposite side of "The Triumph", that is the side of the Arc looking away from Champs-Elysées, you will find "Resistance". This sculpture shows a naked soldier defending his family, urged on by the Roman goddess of future, Antevorte. The last sculpture of the four is called "Peace". It shows a man show puts his sword back into his scabbard, under the protection of Minerva, the Roman warrior goddess. Behind the man you can see the peasants going back to their ordinary daily work. Since the fall of Napoleon in 1815, this sculpture has been interpreted as a celebration of the peace that followed his defeat. Beneath the Arc you will also find an interesting grave. This grave provides the final rest for one of the many unidentified soldiers who died during the First World War. It is known as the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. On the grave a flame burns in memory of the dead, not only for this man, but for all unidentified dead soldiers who lost their lives in during the two World Wars. The coffin was put in its final resting place on 28 January 1921. On top of the grave you can read the inscription "ICI REPOSE UN SOLDAT FRANÇAIS MORT POUR LA PATRIE 1914--1918" which means "Here lies a French soldier who died for his fatherland 1914--1918". In 1961, the US President, John F. Kennedy paid his respect at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, accompanied by French President and war hero Charles de Gaulle. Throughout the years, the Arc has been the place of many other major event and national celebrations. In 1840, Napoleon's body passed under the Arc on its way to its second and final resting place at Les Invalides. There has also been many famous victory marches under the Arc, including the Prussians in 1871 and the French defeat in the Franco-Prussian war, the French in 1918 after the First World War, the Germans in 1940 as they conquered Paris and the French and Allied forces again in 1944 and 1945. Today, the Arc de Triomphe is visited my millions of people each year. If you haven't already, I recommend you take a closer look at the arc by going through the underpass. It is also possible to enter the top, which will give you a great view over central Paris.