Monday, October 17, 2011

Tour de l'Horloge~Missing Paris Day

Part of the Palais de Justice near the Seine,
 Paris' first and oldest public clock
was installed in the 1300's. 

One source cites that the bells of the clock 
rang continuously for 72 hours 
for each royal birth and death. 
Talk about a royal pain! 

I love the ornamentation that has been added over the centuries.
It reminds me of the Astronomical clock in the Old Town square in Prague.
This one would be more fun to look at sitting in a cafe chair 
on a busy plaza sipping something frosty or piping hot,
admiring for hours in relative comfort
like one can do in Prague. 

The bells have since been de-chimed, so to speak. Shame.
The original bell was melted during the Revolution
and the clock itself restored several times.
Part of the fun of the clock in Prague is watching 
the figures twirl and dance every hour,
performing their 'Walk of the Apostles',
sort of like watching the Eiffel Tower
twinkle on the hour in the evenings.

The clock itself is flanked on either side by Law and Justice,
a royal monogram at the top, 
angels attending and 
rams looking on. 

Imagine, for those of the 14th century not used to the sight of a clock on the street,
the daily parade past as its newness became slowly worn.
Oh to be a passerby on the day it was finished
with a glimpse of who was in attendance, 
the clothes they wore, 
the language of the time spoken. 

Pun intended.


  1. This post made me think about clocks I've known in my life...clocks that have been a part of my life, and there are many. Seems they mark time and memories, too. This one is a beauty.

  2. Just stunning...I am so overdue for a Paris jaunt...thanks for taking me away! And for stopping by to enter my giveaway :) I always love reading your comments!
    Have a great week,

  3. OH MY, THIS IS FABULOUS DEAREST! Off to work now, but I could revel here all morning! BISES, Anita

  4. What a beautiful clock to inspire your beautiful thoughts. I love your turn of phrase - "the language of time spoken".

  5. That's a gorgeous clock. I've always wanted to live near a bell tower with a clock. Clocks were such a big deal throughout history and I, too, started thinking about the clocks I've known. Imagine the only way you knew the time was to hear the clock chime or have one of your own. Hotel Westminster, Paris, has gorgeous historical clocks in their rooms with fireplaces. Thanks for this, Kirsten!

  6. I agree. It would be a royal pain, bad pun intended. ha.

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