Sacré Choeur Basilica
Jean-François de la Barre statue
A statue of Jean-François de la Barre is located in the Nadar garden (Square Nadar), at the feet of the basilica. The current bronze statue is the work of sculptor Emmanuel Ball (and Kalkolitik was the art foundry). It was installed in the garden in February 2001.
To the Chevalier de La Barre
Who was tortured to death
On July 1st, 1766
For not saluting
De la Barre became a symbol of religious intolerance and remained in French history thanks to Voltaire, a French writer and philosopher who professed humanism and opposed intolerance in any form. I would recommend that you read Candide by Voltaire (available at Project Gutenberg in French and in English)
The base of the statue is inscribed with a quote by Voltaire from his Dictionnaire Philosophique (Philosophical Dictionary): “The most remarkable is the universal tolerance” (or in French “La plus remarquable est la tolérance universelle”)
The plinth is older than the current statue. A first statue, created in 1900, represented de la Barre chained to a column. It was judged disquieting and moved in 1926 to a remote place, before it was destroyed in 1941.
Just outside the Nadar Garden is a Wallace Fountain. These beautiful fountains were financed by Sir Richard Wallace, an English philanthropist who lived and died in Paris. He wanted to make sure that homeless people in Paris would not have to pay for fresh water.
Charles-Auguste Lebourg designed the cast-iron sculptures for the fountains.
When you go down the stairs (a few hundreds of them) to go back to the bottom of the hill, you can see a wall full of graffiti.
General De Gaulle meets Bob Marley