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The Arc de Triomphe de l'Étoile ">[aʁk də tʁijɔ̃f də letwal], Triumphal Arch of the Star) is one of the most famous monuments in Paris, standing at the western end of the Champs-Élysées at the center of Place Charles de Gaulle, formerly named Place de l'Étoile — the étoile or "star" of the juncture formed by its twelve radiating avenues.

Arc de Triomphe
Arc de Triomphe, 2 August 2015 002.jpg
The Arc de Triomphe from the Champs-Élysées
Arc de Triomphe is located in Paris
Arc de Triomphe
Location within Paris
Alternative names Arc de Triomphe de l'Étoile
General information
Type Triumphal Arch
Architectural style Neoclassicism
Location Place Charles de Gaulle (formerly Place de l'Étoile)
Coordinates 48°52′26″N 2°17′42″E / 48.8738°N 2.2950°E / 48.8738; 2.2950Coordinates: 48°52′26″N 2°17′42″E / 48.8738°N 2.2950°E / 48.8738; 2.2950
Construction started 15 August 1806
Inaugurated 29 July 1836
Height 50 m (164 ft)
Dimensions
Other dimensions Wide: 45 m (148 ft)
Deep: 22 m (72 ft)
Design and construction
Architect Jean Chalgrin, Louis-Étienne Héricart de Thury

The Arc de Triomphe de l'Étoile ([aʁk də tʁijɔ̃f də letwal], Triumphal Arch of the Star) is one of the most famous monuments in Paris, standing at the western end of the Champs-Élysées at the center of Place Charles de Gaulle, formerly named Place de l'Étoile — the étoile or "star" of the juncture formed by its twelve radiating avenues.

The Arc de Triomphe should not be confused with a smaller arch, the Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel, which stands west of the Louvre. The Arc de Triomphe honours those who fought and died for France in the French Revolutionary and the Napoleonic Wars, with the names of all French victories and generals inscribed on its inner and outer surfaces. Beneath its vault lies the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier from World War I.

As the central cohesive element of the Axe historique (historic axis, a sequence of monuments and grand thoroughfares on a route which runs from the courtyard of the Louvre to the Grande Arche de la Défense, the Arc de Triomphe was designed by Jean Chalgrin in 1806 and its iconographic program pits heroically nude French youths against bearded Germanic warriors in chain mail. It set the tone for public monuments with triumphant patriotic messages.

Inspired by the Roman Arch of Titus, the Arc de Triomphe has an overall height of 50 metres (164 ft), width of 45 m (148 ft) and depth of 22 m (72 ft), while its large vault is 29.19 m (95.8 ft) high and 14.62 m (48.0 ft) wide. The smaller transverse vaults are 18.68 m (61.3 ft) high and 8.44 m (27.7 ft) wide. Three weeks after the Paris victory parade in 1919 (marking the end of hostilities in World War I), Charles Godefroy flew his Nieuport biplane under the arch's primary vault, with the event captured on newsreel.

Paris's Arch de Triomphe was the tallest triumphal arch until the completion of the Monumento a la Revolución in Mexico City in 1938, which is 67 metres (220 ft) high. The Arch of Triumph in Pyongyang, completed in 1982, is modelled on the Arc de Triomphe and is slightly taller at 60 m (197 ft).