Spewing sphinx

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A sphinx spewing water is not the sort of thing that you see everyday. At the fontaine du Châtelet (or the "Fountain of the Palm") in downtown Paris, you can see four in one place. These jetting sphinxes are part of the base of a fountain designed not just for memory or beauty, but to provide drinking water to the public. Above them is a column topped by a golden Victory offering laurels. 

The structure was built between 1806 and 1808 on the right bank of the Seine. It is a commemorative display honoring Napoléon Bonaparte for his victories here and there, including his not-so-victorious Eastern Campaign (hence the sphinxes). 

Standing before the fountain, I am reminded of the famous statement of Napoléon issued on an Egyptian battlefield on July 21, 1798: "From the heights of these pyramids, forty centuries look down on us."

That's quite the pep talk.

For more on the Battle of the Pyramids, see here.

Buen caminó!


Join Mark and Vicki for a Mediterranean experience in October, 2018. We'll be cruising aboard the luxurious Celebrity Reflection. See the link here for details. Onboard lectures will provide focus as we visit the ports of Malta, Rhodes, Santorini, and Athens among others. An optional add-on visit to Rome is possible on either end of the trip.