Centenary Agenda at the Musée de l'Armée

2016 commemorative events

As part of the commemorations of the WWI Centennial, and more specifically the Battle of Verdun Centenary, the musée de l’Armée offers a wide range of events.

Special exhibition: The “Hyperbataille” of Verdun

Verdun, juillet 1916 peint par Flameng François © Paris, musée de l'Armée

On 21 February 1916, German High Command launched a major offensive on the Verdun sector. This offensive was to become the first act of one of the greatest battles of the First World War. Heavy artillery fire, massive concentration of troops and accumulation of military means all contributed to the deadly nature of this battle that French historian François Cochet was the first to call one of the "hyperbatailles" of the War.

However, Verdun is not one of the greatest battles of the Great War solely on accounts of its magnitude. It also represents the symbol of the determination of France and its combatants to "hold on, whatever the cost" and, as such, incarnates French national reconciliation and unity. As a result, it quickly became a concept of spirit of place in relation to the construction of memory that summarises a four years long armed conflict or, at least, delivers a significant part of it.

In this Centennial year, the main visual landmarks, the evocation of emblematic battle sites, the reminder of the major characteristics of this exceptional battle allow us to offer to our visitors a full panorama of the Battle of Verdun presented on the pillars all around the Cour d’Honneur of the Hôtel des Invalides. It also includes comments on the main milestones of its Construction of Memory, from the voluntary initiatives led by WWI veterans to the place of Memory for Franco-German Reconciliation.

This exhibition has been awarded the "Label Centenaire" label included in the official programme of the First World War Centenary Mission.

From 26 January to 4 April 2016.
Cour d’Honneur of the Hôtel national des Invalides.
Free-of-charge amission.

The interactive multimedia program dedicated to Marshal Ferdinand Foch

Portrait de Ferdinand Foch (1851-1929), maréchal de France © Paris, musée de l'Armée

Thanks to this new interactive multimedia program you will discover all the secrets of the Tomb of Marshal Ferdinand Foch, his life, his actions as Supreme Allied Commander during the Great War until his death in 1929 and his burial in the tomb designed by French sculptor Paul Landowski .
We hope to see you in the Dome Church to discover the interactive multimedia program.

Concerts

As part of the Centenary of the Battle of Verdun commemorations and on the occasion of its 2016-2017 musical season, the musée de l’Armée will host a series of concerts at the end of 2016 featuring great arias and masterworks performed by the biggest names in classical music today.

Year-round guided tours

  • Story guide for families (in french): Raoul Magrin-Vernerey, un poilu dans la Grande Guerre (English: Raoul Magrin-Vernerey, a First World War infantryman) the story of Officer Raoul Magrin-Vernerey is told in areas devoted to the Great War.
  • Guided tour for adult groups: the First World War (in french) presents the many facets of the conflict: the terrible technical innovations in weaponry, the suffering of millions of mobilised soldiers, the involvement of the general public, the internationalisation of the battle and its toll on human life.
  • School and university group tours with La première guerre mondiale au Musée de l'Armée (English: First World War at the Musée de l'Armée) tour and themed tours L'âge de la guerre totale (English: The Age of Total War: 1914 - 1945) and Les femmes et la guerre: 1914 - 1915 (English: Women and the War: 1914 - 1945).
  • Inter-institution tours for school groups :
    The tour is in partnership with the Val d'Oise archive centre from September 2014. Guided tours with a half-day at the archive centre and another half-day in the 14-18 halls at the Musée de l'Armée. A choice of two themes will be presented at the two institutions: mobilisation at home and the war effort/the image of foreigners during the War. Tour approved by the Mission du Centenaire.

Past Centenary exhibitions

View from the front. Representing the Great War

The exhibition has received the "Label Centenaire" to celebrate the centenary of the First World War in partnership with the Bibliothèque de Documentation Internationale Contemporaine - Université Paris Ouest Nanterre la Défense

Discover the web site dedicated to the exhibition