Guillotine 230 years ago, where Louis XVI was immediately buried?

Members, did you know? The head of King Louis XVI fell under the guillotine on January 21, 1793. But where was he buried then? Reply…

Today, his remains are in the royal necropolis of the Basilica of Saint-Denis. With those of most other monarchs of France. But only on January 21, 1815 for the 22E anniversary of his death, that Louis XVI was buried there – as was his wife, Queen Marie-Antoinette – at the behest of King Louis XVIII, his brother.

Louis XVI’s body was taken to the Madeleine cemetery

On January 21, 1793, just after the king had been executed by guillotine in the Place de la Révolution (now Place de la Concorde) in Paris, his body was taken to a dump truck in front of a crowd that had come in large numbers to witness his execution. He was then taken to the nearby Madeleine Cemetery.

“Louis was buried with his hands tied and his head between his legs. One of the gravediggers poured a bucket of quicklime into the pit, and then, equipped with shovels, the men filled it with dirt,” we can read in the compilation “The Last Days of the Kings”. Marie-Antoinette, who also perished on the scaffold, was also buried there nine months later

On the site of these first tombs of his older brother and his sister-in-law, Louis XVIII. decided to build a reconciliation chapel. However, its construction was completed only in 1826, two years after his death, during the reign of their youngest brother Karl in his memory. The year 2023 was no exception to the rule, this religious ceremony took place on Sunday 22 January in the presence of Louis Alphonse de Bourbon, Duke of Anjou and Legitimist pretender to the throne of France.

Louis Alphonse de Bourbon, Duke of Anjou, in front of the Expiatory Chapel, Place Louis XVI in Paris, January 22, 2023

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