For this second article on Père Lachaise: I have selected 6 out of thousands, as well as the columbarium and crematorium. You can also read the one on the history of the cemetery, and the one on the ghosts of Père Lachaise by clicking on the links),
Columbarium and crématorium
The crematorium-columbarium complex consists of a neo-Byzantine style chapel and four wings. The roof consists of a large brick and sandstone dome, three small half-domes and two chimneys. In the 1920s, the main dome was decorated with stained glass windows by Carl Mauméjean. The final columbarium consists of four levels: two in the basement and two outside and can hold 40,800 boxes. In the columbarium are many celebrities including the director Max Ophüls, the comedian Pierre Dac and the cenotaph of Maria Callas.
Oscar Wilde and ladies kisses
Oscar Wilde’s tomb: it is surrounded by glass, because since the 1990s a ritual had been taking place there – admirers would come and kiss it, leaving a trace of lipstick. Cosmetics were damaging the stone, so the glass wall was erected ……. So today they put the kiss … on the glass.
Edith Piaf and her young’s lovers
Grave of Edith Piaf: one of the biggest and most famous French singer, immortalized in the film “la môme”. She had a life far from a long quiet river, especially from a love point of view. Here she is not alone, as 3 of her young lovers lie close to her grave.
Felix Faure, the french Bill Clinton
Tomb of Félix Faure: here is a politician who knew how to leave with panache. He was in the company of his mistress, at the Elysée Palace, as he was President of the French Republic in 1899. Well, he gave us an early “Bill Clinton” with Monica Lewinski, except that he had a cardiac arrest during the act, and died as a result.
Listen this so french song : “le temps des cerises”
Tomb of Jean Baptiste Clément : the name doesn’t mean anything to you? but the song you probably know : ” le temps des cerises “, interpreted among others by Yves Montand. Lets listen it, click here.
The grave for the fertility
Tomb of Victor Noir : What an incredible story. This journalist had written a very critical article on Prince Pierre Bonaparte, (nephew of Napoleon I and cousin of Napoleon III). He was just 22 years old, he went with a friend to the home of the prince who killed him with a pistol. This triggered popular riots, and further precipitated the fall of the Second Empire, which was faltering following the defeat of Sedan. Buried with a “gisant” (lying statue) on his grave showing him in the position where he died. You will find it strange that some parts of the statue are shiny. Indeed, visitors do come to rub parts of the statue, but which ones and why? First of all the feet, this is common. The place where the bullet is lodged in the chest is less common but understandable,
On the other hand … the mouth and the male part of his anatomy … this is stranger. In fact To show all the vigour of the deceased at the moment of his death, Jules Dalou (the sculptor) endowed his work with a virility well moulded by the trousers. From this sculptural irregularity is said to have originated a legend. According to which certain touches on the virile part of the Victor Noir statue, would bring fertility to young women. Here are the détails.