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Wednesday, 03 November 2004
Liberty Enlightening the World

Colmar Statue of Liberty

This 12 metre high replica of the famous New York statue was installed outside the home town of it’s creator on 4 July this year.  It is facing North, so I am approaching it here as I leave the city.  It is in the middle of a traffic circle, but


tourists stop and take photos of each other in front of it.

According to Wikipedia, there are many more of what it quaintly describes as smaller copies of Liberty.  The first one it describes as follows

A smaller-scale copy of the Statue of Liberty is found in Paris, France, where it stands on an island in the river Seine, looking towards the Atlantic Ocean and hence towards its “larger sister” in New York.

I think this is factually incorrect or misleading.  There are actually two statues of Liberty in Paris. There is the one mentioned, on the Seine, but there is also another in Luxembourg Gardens in Paris, and according to one of my guide books the Luxembourg Liberty was the original model for the larger statue that was given to the United States.  I haven’t been able to find another reference to this.

The Liberty on the Seine River, which is larger than the Luxembourg one, was given to the French by the Americans on the centenial of American Independence from the British. On the base of the statue on the Seine are the dates of both the French and the American revolutions (4 July 1776 and 14 July 1789).  Originally it was placed facing the Eiffel Tower, but on the request of the sculptor Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi was later shifted so that she faces the New York Liberty.  So, very resonant and symbolic.

PS Sorry for the splotches on the photo - they are from kamakazi insects that bombed my windscreen.

Edit: I found an article that explains that the statue in Luxembourg Gardens was the original cast produced by the artist. Link.

Posted by bigblue on 03/11/2004 at 12:01 AM
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