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  • Eye Prefer Paris is an ex-New Yorker's insider's guide to Paris. Richard Nahem writes his blog from his fabulous 18th century apartment in the fashionable Marais district of Paris

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July 14, 2008


Maria Ruiz

Happy Independence Day France!!!!

Doomed to be Fabulous

Hi Richard! I love your blog. Just FYI, la fête nationale de 14 juillet doesn't actually celebrate the storming of the Bastille. It celebrates the 1790 Fête de la Fédération. The 1790 Fête de la Fédération took place (half-coincidentally, half-symbollically) exactly one year after the storming of the Bastille, which is why in English it's called "Bastille Day," even though technically it isn't related to the Bastille prison. The Fête de la Fédération was arguably the first time the regions of France united, under their own accord, under a common national identity of being "French."

I was on the Champs de Mars this year to watch the fireworks, they were STUNNING! Best fireworks show I've seen in this lifetime.


Ok, feel free to trash previous comment, as I've attributed the wrong name to the above comment! And I do apologize for that!
Finally though, the 2008 fireworks were absolute garbage and a waste of time compared to previous years, do you remember 2005?


Glad somebody caught you on the actual meaning of the 14 July, though my understanding is that your version, though technically wrong, is the more widespread one.

I was in Paris for 24 hours last week-end and made sure to see the spectacular Assemblée Nationale display after dinner in the Marais (Trois Petits Cochons, of course!). Thanks for recommending it!

Thank you.

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