Fort Saint-Jean, Marseille

Fort Saint-Jean, Marseille

Fort Saint-Jean is a fortification in Marseille, built in 1660 by Louis XIV at the entrance to the Old Port. Fort Saint-Nicolas was constructed at the same time on the opposite side of the harbor. Two earlier buildings were incorporated into the structure of the fort: the twelfth century Commandry of the Knights Hospitaller of St John of Jerusalem, which served as a monastic hospice during the crusades; and the fifteenth century tower of René I, King of Provence.

In April 1790 Fort Saint-Jean was seized by a revolutionary mob who decapitated the commander of the royal garrison. During the subsequent French Revolution the fort was used as a prison, holding Louis Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, and two of his sons, Louis-Charles, Count of Beaujolais, and Antoine Philippe, Duke of Montpensier. Following the overthrow of Robespierre in 1794 about a hundred Jacobin prisoners held in the fort were massacred. Throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries Fort Saint-Jean was in the possession of the French Army, who utilized it as a barracks and clearing station for the Army of Africa.

During World War II Fort Saint-Jean was occupied by the German military in November 1942. In August 1944 during the liberation of Marseilles, the explosion of a munitions depot within the fort destroyed much of its historic battlements and buildings. Classified as a historical monument in 1964, the damaged portions of the fort were reconstructed between 1967 and 1971. It now houses the Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilizations.
Sight description based on Wikipedia.

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Fort Saint-Jean on Map

Sight Name: Fort Saint-Jean
Sight Location: Marseille, France (See walking tours in Marseille)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Marseille, France

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Create Your Own Walk in Marseille

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Historical Churches Walking Tour

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Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.6 Km or 2.2 Miles
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Marseille Introduction Walking Tour

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The leader of the galley people was one called Protis. Protis was...  view more

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Travel Distance: 3.8 Km or 2.4 Miles
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Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.9 Km or 1.8 Miles
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Marseille doesn't have a flagship thoroughfare as such,...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.8 Km or 1.1 Miles