18 June 2010

Montaigne and Montesquieu, Bordeaux, Gironde (33), France

Along with Mauriac, Montaigne (1533-92), and Montesquieu (1689-1755) are the other two giants of literature around here beginning with the same letter, and the size of the statues here on the Esplanade des Quinconces, Bordeaux, seems to give them a symbolic significance.

Around the side of Montaigne's statue are a few sentences from Chapter II of Book II of his Essais.

Montesquieu holds a copy of L'Esprit des lois.

These statues were made by Dominique Félix Maggesi (1801-92), who, from 1829, was the official sculptor in Bordeaux, where he ran his own school of sculpture until 1886.

This bust of Maggesi is in the Jardin Public.

There is another memorial to Montaigne in Bordeaux: 'In the 16th century on this site numbers 23 and 25 rue de la Rousselle and 3 rue Faure (formerly rue Montaigne) stood the family residence of Michel Montaigne author of Essais Mayor of Bordeaux 1581-1585.'

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