jeudi 18 août 2011

Place du Québec

The old platform of the bastion called the “Cavalier des Champs-Vauverts” was renamed the Place du Québec (Québec Square) in 1984 to mark the 450th anniversary of the first voyage by Jacques Cartier (Saint-Malo 1491 - Saint-Malo 1557) to Canada in 1534.
Cavalier is the French name for a fortification work placed inside an enclosing wall. The latter was erected from 1565 to 1654. It became an arsenal in the days of the Saint-Malo Republic (1590-1594).
The entryway has an alcove above it containing a statuette of St. Barbe, the patron saint of old Saint-Malo gunners.
The bronze statue of Robert Surcouf (Saint-Malo 1773 - Saint-Malo 1827) made by Alfred Caravanniez (1902) was placed there in 1958. The sculptor depicted the corsair ordering an enemy ship he is pointing at to be boarded.
The buildings of the old arsenal now house the Maison du Québec (an office run by the Provincial Government of Québec), Accueil des Villes Françaises (a non-profit association that welcomes new arrivals to French cities), and the Comité de Quartier de St-Malo Intra-muros (an Old Saint-Malo Neighbourhood Committee).