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When we discovered the Jardin du Luxembourg in 2003 we loved it; fountains, statues, flowers, people playing chess, kids having fun, relaxing benches and chairs and acres of beautiful trees to stroll through and sit under for shade! Located in the gardens is the French Senate housed in the Palais du Luxembourg, a beautiful castle if you will. The “find” was the Fontaine Médicis, built on orders of Marie de Medicis, Italian born consort of King Henri IV. The Medici Fountain has two sides, one with a marble group representing Acis and Galatea lying under a rock on top of which the colossal figure Polyphemus overlooks the beautiful reflection pond in front of the fountain and a smaller fountain on the back dedicated to Marie de Medicis! When we were standing there in 2003 we had a local explain the reason why the fountain was built and dedicated to the Queen. Marie had just finished training in London at a nursing teaching school and was headed back to Italy to train nursing to the people of her country when she was given word that she was to be married to the French King, Henri IV. When she became consort of the King she started working on building a nursing training school in Paris. She took over an old apartment close to the present gardens and turned it into a nursing school and later it became a hospital. Later in her life she became Queen and regent of King Louis XIII of France. At her death the fountain on the back was built as a tribute to her and her service to the people of France! We cannot verify this story with any known published articles on the internet, but other life long Parisians have verified that this is the story they know also. We couldn’t wait to get back and sit next to the fountain!

Wonderful strolling lanes to pass the time!

Wonderful strolling lanes to pass the time!

Renting a radio controlled boat is another enjoyable pastime!

Renting a radio controlled boat is another enjoyable pastime!

Watching chess played with spirit and passion!

Watching chess played with spirit and passion!

A view from the south end of the gardens!

A view from the south end of the gardens!

Many paths to take or just sit on a bench!

Many paths to take or just sit on a bench!

Statues and flowers.

Statues, Horse Chestnut Trees and flowers.

Icelandic Poppies in bloom!

Icelandic Poppies in bloom!

Orange Icelandic Poppies!

Orange Icelandic Poppies!

Insects have their own lodging at this garden!

Insects have their own lodging at this garden!

Looking for and finding the other Statue of Liberty!

Looking for and finding the other Statue of Liberty!

Statue of Marie de' Medici,  26 April 1573 – 3 July 1642

Statue of Marie de’ Medici, 26 April 1573 – 3 July 1642

Back side of The Medici Fountain!

Back side of The Medici Fountain!

Closeup of dedication plaque!

Closeup of dedication plaque!

View of fountain and reflection pond at The Medici Fountain!

View of fountain and reflection pond at The Medici Fountain!

Closeup of front!

Closeup of front!

From the side!

From the side!

One happy Lois and Stan!

One happy Lois and Stan!

 

 

 

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