The Jeu de Paume room should reopen its doors on April 1st. Roofing, framework, joinery… from July 2021 to February 2022, major works were carried out in the room where the French Constitution was born.

Jeu de Paume room of Versailles reopens its doors
Jeu de Paume room of Versailles reopens its doors

A National treasure

The Jeu de Paume hall was in dire need of a facelift, since it had not been restored since the bicentenary of the French Revolution ! After several months of work, the famous place located near the Palace of Versailles, considered a “national treasure”, will reopen its doors to the public on April 1, 2022, and will be able to resume its guided tours.

A budget of 1.8 million euros

The Jeu de Paume room, located in the Saint-Louis district, below the Palace of Versailles, entered the history of France on June 20, 1789. A major place where French democracy was founded, the room today required a major restoration. The work was financed by current or former deputies , for a budget of 1.8 million euros. From July 2021 to February 2022, the chief architect of historical monuments, Pierre Bortolussi, led the restoration of the roof, the frame, the joinery, the painted decoration of the room and the floor. The works of art were also in great need of renewal, Olivier Merson’s canvas representing the Oath of the Jeu de Paume was able to see its cracks disappear and regain its legibility.

The symbol of the revolution

The place On June 20, 1789, the Salle du Jeu de Paume became the symbol of the Revolution. The deputies of the Third Estate meet there on the occasion of the holding of the States-General. The painter Jacques-Louis David immortalized the founding scene known as the Oath of the Jeu de Paume, a canvas that he left unfinished and which is now in the attics of the Palace of Versailles. The Jeu de Paume is a former games room (the jeu de Paume is the ancestor of tennis), the room has become a symbol devoted to the memory of the abolition of the monarchy. Quickly disused, it acquired the status of national property in 1793 and, for lack of maintenance, was closed to the public five years later. In 1848, the room was classified as a historic monument, then became a gaming room again under the Second Empire.

It became a museum in 1883

It was with the approach of the centenary of the French Revolution that restoration work began, and the conversion of the place into a museum of the French Revolution. The museum was thus inaugurated on June 20, 1883, in the presence of Jules Ferry. After some restoration allowed before the celebration of the bicentenary of the French Revolution (1989), the Jeu de Paume hall is now open to the public.

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