7 Things You Didn't Know About Paris

Ah, mon ami, Paris, the City of Love and the City of Lights all in one incredible package is incroyable! With over 17.44 million visitors in 2017, Paris holds a magical quality that makes it a top destination for honeymooners, vacationers and business travelers. Here are seven things you didn't know about Paris.

1. The Name Origin of Paris

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History asserts that present-day Paris was first inhabited by the Celtic people. The Celtic Parisii tribe gave it the name Parisii in the third century B.C. The name Parisii was later shortened in 508 A.D. to Paris. It was then that King Clovis made it the official capital of his kingdom.

2. Why Is Paris referred to as the City of Love?

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With its lilting rhythm, the native French language is called an expression of love, and thus, for many centuries, Paris has been known as the most romantic city on the planet. Love is everywhere in Paris. Its people are comfortable expressing their feelings wherever they go. It is common to see couples walking hand-in-hand, hugging and kissing each other in public.

3. Why Is Paris Referred to as the City of Light?

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The "City of Light" description is based on the prominent role the city played during the Age of Enlightenment. History shows that as far back as the 12th century, Paris was the largest city in the civilized western world. Education, learning, philosophy, debates and discussions were the discourse of the day during the 18th century.

Intellectuals from all over Europe came to Paris to partake of its delights. Yes, there is Beaujolais, French wine, painters, artisans and the people. Still to this day, the University of Paris attracts brilliant minds from all over Europe and the world. Not a surprise, this city was the first European city to use gas street lighting in Europe to illuminate or “lumière” its boulevards at night, so that only adds to the nickname.  

4. Paris: The Hidden Village Within

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Did you know that there is a village within the Paris? Very few people know about the La Campagne, a Paris village in Paris. The literal name is the Countryside in Paris. The village was established as a cooperative by Pastor Sully Lombard. A few minutes from Paris’s Peripherique Ring Road lies the La Campagne village with about 92 quaint houses situated at the affluent 20th arrondissement, or borough.

5. Yes, The Statue of Liberty Is in Paris

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You probably know about the statue of liberty in New York. Did you know she has a twin? There is another one in Paris, though smaller. The Statue of Liberty in New York was donated by the French people in 1881 to the United States. The two statues represent friendship and alliance between the two nations during the American Revolution. “Vive la liberté,” long live freedom.

6. One Stop Sign in Paris

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For foreigners driving in Paris, it has its share of perils. The speed, roundabouts and pedestrians wreak havoc on the nerves. There is only a single stop sign in the whole of Paris. Yes, it is true! The only stop sign is located in the wealthy 16th arrondissement.

7. Hate the Eiffel Tower?

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Today the Eiffel Tower is the go-to Paris destination, yet there were those who opposed its construction. The Eiffel Tower, named after the engineer Gustave Eiffel, stands at the height of 300 meters. Many intellectuals were appalled during its construction and viewed it as a monstrosity. French author Guy de Maupassant demonstrated his disdain for the site by preferring to have his lunch daily at the site base to avoid seeing the tower.

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