Directly in front of the Louvre, between the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel and the Arc de Triomphe de l'Etoile in Paris, where there is now a vast empty space, there once stood the magnificent Tuileries Palace, home of French monarchs. It was burned down in 1871 by the Paris Commune, a revolutionary government that seized power in Paris for two months.
The Tuileries Palace was commissioned in 1564 by Catherine de' Medici, widow of Henry II of France. After the accidental death of her husband, Catherine wanted a new residence for herself, close to the Louvre. The site selected for the palace, just outside the walls of the city, was previously occupied by the workshops and kilns craftsmen who made "tuiles", or roof tiles, and hence the name of the palace. Catherine engaged Philibert de l'Orme to design the palace. But de l'Orme’s untimely death in 1570 led to Jean Bullant taking his place.
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