Tag Archives: Pont Neuf

Paris Wanderlust: Words on the Street

Paris Wanderlust

Words on the Street

Scatological Seine poem

Inscribed on the ceiling of an archway near Pont Neuf is a verse by 17th-century poet Claude Le Petit, from his collection Paris ridicule.

Rue de Nevers (6e)

In the poem, Le Petit satirizes the newly-constructed Pont Neuf as a rickety magnet for rogues and a viewing platform for the sewage-laden waters of the Seine. He ponders the difficulty of knowing whether the bigger beasts are on the bridge or under it.

Claude le Petit (1638-1662)

Such scandalous verses could only have fanned the flames when the 23-year-old poet was burned at the stake for being an atheist and—worse—for insulting the aristocracy. He was granted the favour of first being strangled.

Rimbaud and the Naughty Fellows

Speaking of épater la bourgeoisie . . .

Arthur Rimbaud’s long poem “The Drunken Boat” is calligraphed along a narrow Left Bank street. An inscription commemorates the 17-year-old Rimbaud’s recitation of the poem at an infamous 1872 meeting of Les Vilains Bonshommes (The Naughty Fellows) at a nearby restaurant.

The decorous members of the literary and arts club were scandalized by Rimbaud’s vertiginous imagery, by turns sublime (“golden birds” in “delirious skies”) and disgusting (“bluish wine stains and splashes of vomit”).

In turn, the enfant terrible, appalled by the genteel verses of the Naughty Fellows, threw a violent tantrum shouting “Merde! Merde!”

Thus did Rimbaud’s brief association with the Naughty Fellows come to a suitably catastrophic end.

Rue Férou, near Place Saint-Sulpice (6e)

You are here . . .

Monumental mural helps you navigate the labyrinthine streets of the 13th arrondissement. Or not, if you like wandering aimlessly like a good flâneur.


On a ceramic map, Étienne de la Hire points out your location.


Voodoo doll graffito tells you who you are, too.

Next: Sculptures — Niches & Caryatids

Camille Martin

Paris Wanderlust: Bridging the Seine

Bridging the Seine

This post, just pictures.

Pont Mirabeau

Standing on Pont Mirabeau. In the distance is Pont de Grenelle, which passes over Ile des Cygnes.

Viaduc de Passy

Gift to the City of Paris in 1948 by Danish sculptor Holger Wederkinch, Monument de la France renaissante, on Viaduc de Passy
Wederkinch’s equestrian statue evokes Jeanne d’Arc to symbolize the rebirth of France after World War II.

Pont Alexandre III

Pont des Arts

Pont des Arts, leading to l’Académie Française

Pont Neuf

Pont Neuf (Pont des Arts in the distance)

Pont au Double

Pont de la Tournelle

Sculptor: Paul Landowski, statue of Ste Geneviève, Pont de la Tournelle

Pont de Sully

Pont d’Austerlitz

Viaduc d’Austerlitz

Pont Charles de Gaulle

Passerelle Simone de Beauvoir

Pont de Bercy

Pont de Bercy (Fulton Residence in the distance)

Next: Passages with Personality

Camille Martin