Who was Jean Jaurès | History of France

Written by on December 18, 2018 in French Icons

Wherever you go in France you’re sure to come across a Place Jean Jaurès, a rue Jean Jaurès, Avenue Jean Jaurès, schools and even metro stations of that name in Paris and Lyon.

Every French school child will learn about Jean Jaurès. He is one of the most well-known figures of French history, though he is hardly known outside his home country.

Who was Jean Jaurès

Born 1859 in the Tarn region, Jean Jaurès became one of the most celebrated figures of French history, a social thinker, anti-war campaigner and politician. A man who has left his mark on French culture.

He was famous for his eloquent speeches, for standing up for workers’ rights and as one of the founding members and leader of the French Socialist Party, the forerunner to France’s Socialist Party. He also founded the socialist newspaper L’Humanité, still sold today.

On a Friday evening July 31, 1914, a 29-year-old French nationalist by the name of Raoul Villain arrived at the Café du Croissant. It’s still there, at 146 Rue Montmartre, Paris. He pulled a pistol from his pocket and fired two shots at a diner. The bullets struck his target twice in the head. The hits were fatal for Jean Jaurès, the victim, dining with the editor of L’Humanité.

Anti-war

Nowadays Jaurès is best remembered for his anti-militarism and attempts to avert the outbreak of the First World War.

“Never, for forty years, has Europe been in a more threatening and more tragic situation,” he warned in the spring of 1914. He had been trying to force governments to find a path other than war by organising workers strikes in Europe. It didn’t please everyone.

His assassination brought the strike actions to an end. Just hours later, Germany declared war on Russia and two days later on France. By August 4 when Jaurès was buried, all the major powers of Europe were officially at war.

Jean Jaurès’ final resting place is in the Pantheon, Paris.

More Petit History features of France coming up in our free magazine The Good Life France, subscribe for free through any issue  www.thegoodlifefrance.com/category/magazine/

Related Articles

History of the French Flag

History of the French Flag

Written by on July 19, 2019 in French Icons

The French call their flag Le drapeau tricolore. English speakers know it as the French Tricolore. It’s one of the most iconic flags in European history. But how did it come to be? The evolution of the French Flag The flag of France before the French Revolution featured the fleur-de-lis on a blue background. The […]

Continue Reading

The Pyramid at the Louvre

The Pyramid at the Louvre

Written by on March 28, 2019 in French Icons, Paris

When it comes to innovation in architecture, Paris has long been a leader and in the last 150 years, dozens of architectural gems have made it famous for originality and boldness. Just a few include the Eiffel Tower, Pompidou centre, the Louis Vuitton Foundation and La Grande Arche in the Défense business district. These new […]

Continue Reading

A Soap story from Marseille | Savon de Marseille

Genuine Marseille soap is made by artisans with the provenance, passion and long-standing tradition in their blood to lay claim to makers of genuine Marseilles soap. A bar that contains 72% olive oil – and once tried, you will always be loyal to its soapy concoction. History of Marseille Soap In 1688 Louis IV passed […]

Continue Reading

A glimpse of the future at the Millau Viaduct  Aveyron France

The river and gorges of the Tarn are well known and undoubtedly it’s worth losing yourself for a while here in what is the deepest canyon in France. But this really is a place where the vastness of nature meets the enormity of human creation. And, if the Pont du Gard transports you back to […]

Continue Reading

Yves Saint Laurent Museum Paris

Yves Saint Laurent was a genius – a visionary who became a legend at an early age. Today his name graces a variety of products from luxurious cosmetics to high-end handbags. Knowing a bit about his background will enhance your visit to this excellent new museum. Early Yves Saint Laurent Saint Laurent’s career began with […]

Continue Reading

Subscribe

If you enjoyed this article, subscribe now to receive more just like it.

Subscribe via RSS Feed

Comments are closed.

Top