Prototype Meter of 36, Vaugirard Street

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In context : From Rome to Babylone through Luxembourg

(From : Luxembourg Garden). Exit the Garden near the Luxembourg Museum, and take de Vaugirard street on your right.

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The place

Between 1796 and 1797, 16 prototype meters were carved in marble and placed throughout Paris. 5 years earlier, the French Academy of Sciences had properly defined the meter as a standard unit of length, instead of inches or feet.

Nowadays, the meter is a universal measure, and of the 16 parisian marble prototypes of the 1790s, only 2 remain : one is located at the Place Vendôme, but it isn't its original location ; the other one is right here, at 36, Vaugirard street.

It should be noted that the length of the meter as it was set back then has been significantly refined since : now, a standard meter is the distance traveled by light in 1/299 792 458 second.

By iperiago on - Last modified - Report a mistake