that can be found everywhere can be found in Paris"
~Les Misérables (Hugo, 513)
the 18th and 19th centuries Paris had a renowned reputation for
being the social, intellectual, and cultural center of the world.
It was said to always have an eye to its future. The progressions
made in this great city were left by the legacies of the Enlightenment
and the Revolution. It was in this dynamic époque and glorious
city that the Parisian population flourished. The social, political,
and cultural changes that impacted the city could clearly be reflected
in its brilliant people. They embodied all of its greatness.
Parisians had the reputation of being
clearly and distinctively 'Parisian'. In a crowd of people
they could be set apart from the rest. Everything they did, from
the way the dressed
to the way they walked
and talked, was progressive. They were the model for all other
Europeans to emulate. The way in which they carried on conversation
reflected the ideals of the Enlightenment passed on by their famous
deep rooted knowledge was attributed to the access of information
that flowed through the cosmopolitan city in newspapers
and pamphlets. Thus, from both outer appearances and personality,
Parisians carried themselves in a manner that reflected the characteristics
which they acquired during a long period of revolution and modern
thought that was born in Paris, the magnificent City of Light.
Viewed by Foreigners
Viewed by Themselves