Sites and Sounds of Revolutionary Paris

Distinguishable Characteristic
Revolutionary Tradition and Les Mis
Revolution 1789
--The Monarchy
--Tennis Court Oath
--Fall of the Bastille
--October Days
--Declaration of War
--Palace Invaded
--Louis XVI
--Reign of Terror
-- Fall of Robespierre
--At war
1789 in Les Miserables
--The Terror
--The People
--The Students
--The Monarchy
--Place de Concord
--Notre Dame
Daily Sites
--Street Names
--Children's Names and Games
Works Consulted


The first cafe erected in Paris was in 1697 and was greatly frequented by domestic Parisians and tourists alike. During Louis XV reign, cafes were favorite dining places for distinguished peoples of Paris. They have since become one of the most distinguishable characteristics of Paris allowing people of every distinction to enjoy their dining. The extreme popularity of Parisian cafes was not only due to the fine wines and desserts available inside, but also because women were allowed to explore the neighborhood cafes. This was a drastic difference from the cafes in London, where women were not allowed to enter, let alone dine by themselves.

  • In an 1851 guide book, a Parisian man described a scene of elegance while speaking of the Parisian cafes of the time:

"When lighted up at night, the effect, either seen from the exterior or within is perfectly dazzling.(Galligan)"

  • The man proceeded to give details of the interior of many cafes:

"you find yourself bewildered with the blaze of light, amidst the confused glitter of gilding, painting and glass." (15).


*This picture was taken from Giacomo Puccini, La Boheme

The available dishes at a cafe in 1851 included the following items:

  • coffee, chocolates, tea, ices, liqueurs, food, wine, and dejeuners a la fourchette elite horc, (A Parisian favorite).

The favorite cafes in 1851 included; Pierront, cafe Cardinal, cafe de la Banque, and cafe Tortoni, which were all situated in Place de National (24).