Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Medieval Paris: The House of Nicholas Flamel

The house of Nicholas Flamel on a Paris Street.  
Nicholas Flamel's house is
now a charming restaurant,
Auberge Nicholas Flamel.
Nicholas Flamel, the alchemist of Harry Potter fame, was rumored to have turned lead into gold.  Many say that this rumor was a creation of 17th century writers.  What is know for sure, however, is that while grieiving for his wife he set out to use his money for the good of his community.  Perhaps this tale proves what many people have said that giving is the best way to feel truly rich.  He opened his home, at 51 rue de Montmorency, to the homeless and for years provided aid and support to those less fortunate than he. 

The carvings on the front
of Nicholas Flamel's
house.
The house itself stands as a medieval monument on a modernized street.  The house is now a restaurant, Auberge Nicholas Flamel, and close by is a street named for the purported alchemist.  Perhaps that fact that the front of the house was carved with angels and alchemical symbols meant that through the years even the most hardened gentrifier was determined to keep the façade intact. 


Whatever the reason, Nicholas Flamel’s little house is worth a little side trip down the quiet street where it resides.    

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