Bastille


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.

Bastille

(băstēl`) [O.Fr.,=fortress], fortress and state prison in Paris, located, until its demolition (started in 1789), near the site of the present Place de la Bastille. It was begun c.1369 by Hugh Aubriot, provost of the merchants [mayor] of Paris under King Charles V. Arbitrary and secret imprisonment by lettre de cachetlettre de cachet
, formerly in French law, private, sealed document, issued as a communication from the king. Such a letter could order imprisonment or exile for an individual without recourse to courts of law.
..... Click the link for more information.
 gave rise to stories of horror, but actually the Bastille was generally used for persons of influence, and its regime for most political prisoners was mild. As a symbol of absolutism the Bastille was hated. It had strategic importance, for its guns commanded one of the gates of Paris. On July 14, 1789, a Parisian crowd stormed the Bastille in the hope of capturing ammunition. The governor was killed; the seven inmates, none of them political prisoners, were freed. The storming of the Bastille marks the beginning of the French RevolutionFrench Revolution,
political upheaval of world importance in France that began in 1789. Origins of the Revolution

Historians disagree in evaluating the factors that brought about the Revolution.
..... Click the link for more information.
, and July 14—Bastille Day—became the national holiday of republican France.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved. www.cc.columbia.edu/cu/cup/

bastille, bastile

1. A fortification or castle, frequently used as a prison.
2. A tower or bulwark in the fortifications of a town.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Bastille

Paris prison stormed on July 14, 1789. [Fr. Hist.: Worth, 21]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

Bastille

a fortress in Paris, built in the 14th century: a prison until its destruction in 1789, at the beginning of the French Revolution
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
European leaders like German Chancellor Angela Merkel were present for the Bastille Day celebrations, which is marked by a military parade and fly-pasts.
In a Bastille Day message to the French people published before the parade, Macron said he wanted to highlight France's irrevocable commitment to consolidate French and European security.
'"With Bastille, we've always tried to tell stories with our music and make pop music that is thoughtful."
Bastille have promised an 'apocalyptic party' club night where the Music Hall crowd will be warmed up with DJ sets.
BASTILLE: The band will be holding an 'intimate' club night based on the album Doom Days at Aberdeen's Music Hall in December
But Simmons pointed to Bastille's history of genre-hopping since their debut.
Smart, thoughtful and mixing the bleak with the bouncy, Bastille were up to something with their new live show - and it worked brilliantly.
Bastille Day is a joyous national day with popular celebrations in the streets as well as political events.
Made en France is hosting a Bastille Day launch party from 6 to 9 p.m.
As France celebrates the Bastille Day also known as its National Day on Tuesday, the historic parade that has been continuing in the country since 1880, will witness a difference this year.
PARIS, July 14 (KUNA) -- From Champs-Elysees avenue to Concorde square, French flags adorn the capital Paris in celebration of Bastille Day, where US President Donald Trump is guest of honor.