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Private French Classes at the Jardin des Tuileries

Paris is our classroom! Call or contact us to organize lessons at the Jardin des Tuileries and other parks around Paris.

Jardin des Tuileries ChairAutumn arrived early in Paris this year. The leaves on the trees are already changing colors, the days are getting shorter, and the weather has already started to cool.   Before winter arrives and our French lessons have to move indoors, why not spend a few classes exploring the beautiful parks of Paris.

The Jardin des Tuileries is a centrally located, beautiful garden, and it is a great place to start a tour of Parisian parks. The classic green chairs scattered around the ponds and alleyways are ideal for a casual conversation in French with your teacher and a table at one of the four cafes within the park is perfect for more intense review of French conjugation and grammar.

For history buffs, this park has plenty of stories to build a lesson around. Did you know the park was created in 1564 by Catherine de Medicis and modeled after the gardens in her native Florence? The Jardin des Tuileries is also the first public park in Paris. At the request of Charles Perrault, the author of Sleeping Beauty and other famous fairy tales, King Louis XIV opened the park to everyone, except beggars, vagabonds, and soldiers in 1667. During the French Revolution, a portion of the park was given to Marie Antoinette for her private use.  Later during the liberation of Paris in 1944, there was considerable fighting in the park. Really, this park has played a part in French history for over 450 years.

Jardin des Tuileries1For art lovers, the park has been the setting for many paintings and houses numerous famous sculptures. In the late 1800s, French Impressionist painters, such as Edward Manet and Camille Pissarro, would often be found painting in the park.

Along with the 18th or 19th century classical sculptures, the park is full of contemporary works by Henry Moore, Auguste Rodin, Louise Bourgeois, and Roy Lichtenstein. The hardest part of your French lesson might be which sculpture to chose to sit by and discuss during your class!

For architecture enthusiasts, there is the musée du Louvre at the far end of the park to discuss. To get you started, here is a short text in French about the building:

Le musée du Louvre est l’un des plus anciens musées, le troisième plus grand au monde et le plus grand musée parisien de par sa surface. Le bâtiment est un ancien palais royal.

Le Louvre possède une longue histoire de conservation artistique et historique de la France. À l’origine du Louvre il y a un château fort, la Grosse tour du Louvre, érigé par le roi Philippe Auguste, en 1190. L’une de ses principales missions est la surveillance de  la Seine, qui constitue l’une des voies traditionnelles des invasions.

La Grosse tour est détruite en 1528 quand François Ier commence la longue transformation de la forteresse en résidence royale luxueuse. Ceci est interrompu lorsque Louis XIV choisit Versailles comme centre du pouvoir et résidence royale en 1678. Le Louvre reste alors longtemps tel quel.

L’idée de transformer le Louvre en musée prend naissance sous Louis XV. Elle aboutira pendant la Révolution.  Le 10 août 1793 a lieu l’inauguration du nouveau musée. Sous l’Empire, le Louvre prend le nom de musée Napoléon.

Mais en 1871 le musée est incendié lors de la Commune, et l’architecte Hector-Martin Lefuel doit reconstruire une partie des bâtiments. Les Tuileries ne seront jamais reconstruites.

(un château fort : fortified castle ;  ériger : to erect; une surveillance: look out ; une forteresse :  fortress ; tel quel : as such ; avoir lieu : to take place )

Location: Place de la Concorde, 75001 Paris
Transportation:  metros lines 1, 8, and 12 at Concorde and metro line 1 at Tuileries
Hours: 7am to 9pm in April, May, and Sept; 7:30am to 7:30pm October through March; 7am to 11pm in June, July and August.
Admission fees: free

Photo of chair in the Jardin des Tuileries is by Daxis