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The Cover
August 23/30, 2006

In the Park Monceau

Author Affiliations

The Cover Section Editor: M. Therese Southgate, MD, Senior Contributing Editor.

JAMA. 2006;296(8):904. doi:10.1001/jama.296.8.904

Between 1876 and 1878 Claude Monet (1840-1926) painted at least five versions of the historic Park Monceau. Lying within the elegant quarter of Paris just to the northeast of the Arc de Triomphe, the park had its beginnings more than a century earlier when Philippe, Duke of Orléans, began purchasing parcels of land in an area north of Paris known as the Plain of Monceau (literally, heap or pile). A close friend of England's Prince Regent (later George IV) and an Anglophile, in 1778 the Duke commissioned fellow countryman Louis de Carrogis Carmontelle to design an “English style” garden, which could give enjoyment to the poorer classes. Casual, as opposed to the formal layouts of French gardens, the result was an 18th-century Disney-like world: there was a pagoda, a pyramid, Dutch windmills, a Swiss farm, a Roman temple, even feudal ruins. The Duke, unfortunately, enjoyed his largesse only briefly: he was guillotined in 1793.

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