The Panthéon welcomes a woman, Simone Weil

Every now and again I feel fortunate to stand face to face with a remarkable piece of history. Last week, while I was in Paris, I swung off Boulevard Saint-Michel and strode to the Panthéon where hangs a huge photographed image of Simone and Antoine Veil. They are backdropped by the European flag. I stood alone. There were no tourists, no fellow citizens near me, aside from those passing by. I was able to steal that private moment to reflect upon the life of a truly remarkable women whose sorrows and battles seeded a vision and an energy that changed the fortunes of millions, most especially French women. The week previous I had sat in front of the television for two hours on a Sunday morning, 1st July, with my husband watching the entire ceremony, the panthéonisation, of Simone and her “beloved Antoine”. The coffins containing the remains of the pair were being brought for burial to the Panthéon. It was a very hot morning and I applauded the members of the French national guard who carried the two coffins for approximately an hour during which time there was music, readings and dance. Read the rest of this article at The History Girls>>

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