Place de la Concorde, the Luxor Obelisk

The Place de la Concorde covers 68‘500 square meters in prime Paris location. It is big enough to host 10 football fields. St. Peter’s Square in Rome is not even half as broad, however offers quite some more colonnades and pope audiences. The obelisk in the center of France’s second largest city square* is a gift from Egyptian vice-king Muhammed Ali Pascha to French king Louis-Philippe in the hope to get military support by the royal troops in exchange.

Originally set up in Thebes, famous ancient town now partially covered by modern Luxor, the 3500-years-old sculptured monolith weighs over 250 tons. And so does his twin, stoically holding its ground in Thebes which has meanwhile gone down, parts of the ancient site now covered by modern Luxor. The royal gift included this second Luxor Obelisk. And though it never left Egypt, it had to be officially returned. Since 1981 the old colossus guarding the temple from the spot where Ramses II. himself had it erected, is now all Egyptian again. His brother in the French capital was listed in 1936, at the age of 3500.

*first: Place des Quiconces, Bordeaux