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In February half term 17 St John's pupils from the Upper Sixth travelled to Paris for the annual History trip. On the first day, they explored the centre of the city on foot to get their bearings and highlighted two buildings of particular historical interest. Saint Chapelle, a medieval royal chapel that epitomised the grandeur of the pre-revolution French monarchy, and the Conciergerie, the centre of justice in Paris, the home of Revolutionary Tribunals during the Terror phase of the revolution while also used as a prison for those condemned to death.
Day two gave the pupil's time to explore the opulent Palace of Versailles, home of French monarchs before the revolution. The building highlighted the wealth and luxury enjoyed by the monarchy, contrasted sharply against the poverty experienced in France by the general population. The day concluded with a visit to the Tour Montparnasse in southern Paris for a spectacular view of the city.
Day three started with a walk through central Paris from the Louvre, through the Tuileries Garden, the home of the first representative assembly, and the Place de la Concorde, formerly Place de la Revolution, the site of many public guillotine executions. The Army Museum exhibited artefacts from the Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars and housed the immense tomb of Napoleon. The walk continued to the Champ de Mars, site of a massacre, and the Eiffel Tower, and finished with a river cruise, sailing back past everywhere we had been during the day, giving a different view of the journey taken.
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