Tuileries Palace, Burned. General View

Alphonse J. Liébert (French, 1827–1913)
Alfred d'Aunay (French)
Albumen silver print from glass negative
Images approx.: 19 x 25 cm (7 1/2 x 9 13/16 in.), or the reverse
Mounts: 32.8 x 41.3 cm (12 15/16 x 16 1/4 in.), or the reverse
Credit Line:
Joyce F. Menschel Photography Library Fund, 2007
Accession Number:
Not on view
On May 23, 1871, as national forces from Versailles pushed to retake the capital, Communards set fire to the Tuileries Palace, the royal residence built by Catherine de Medici beginning in 1564. Expanded by subsequent sovereigns, the Tuileries had been extensively refurbished as part of Napoleon III's New Louvre project and was the palace in Paris most closely associated with his court. To those who deemed the emperor responsible for France's humiliating defeat and the loss of Alsace and Lorraine, the Tuileries was a particularly attractive target on which to exact revenge. Its burned-out shell, depicted here, remained standing until 1883, when it was demolished.
Estate of Harry Lunn, Paris; [Baudoin Lebon, Paris]

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Napoleon III and Paris," June 9–September 7, 2009.

Goldschmidt, Helmut, and Weston J. Naef. The Truthful Lens: A Survey of the Photographically Illustrated Book, 1844–1914. 1st ed. New York: The Grolier Club, 1980. no. 105.

Bajac, Quentin. La Commune Photographiée. Paris: Musée d'Orsay, 2000.