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Place d'Armes

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Place d'Armes is a square in the Old Montreal historic district of Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The second oldest public site in Montreal, it was called Place de la Fabrique when it was first developed in 1693, at the request of the Sulpicians, then later renamed Place d'Armes in 1721 when it became the stage of various military events. From 1781 to 1813, it was used as a hay and wood market, then developed as a Victorian garden after it was acquired by the city in 1836. Its present layout dates back to 1960.[1]

The square features a monument in memory of Paul de Chomedey, commemorating Chomedey's defense of the young French settlement against the Iroquois, created in 1895 by artist Louis-Philippe Hébert. Foundations from the original Notre-Dame Church lie under the square. [2]

The buildings that surround it represent the major periods of Montreal's development. Fronting the square is Notre-Dame Basilica and the Saint-Sulpice Seminary. Other structures include the New York Life Building (1887), Montreal's first high-rise; the Bank of Montreal head office (1859), Canada's first bank; the Art Deco Aldred Building.[3] (1931) and the International style 500 Place d'Armes (1968).[4]

The current Place d'Armes is actually the third location in Montreal to bear that name, a long-used French term for a place where a city's defenders assemble. [5]


  1. History of Place d'Armes. Design Montreal. City of Montreal Web site. Retrieved on 2008-03-03.
  2. History of Place d'Armes. Design Montreal. City of Montreal Web site. Retrieved on 2008-03-03.
  3. Szasz, Colin (2000-12-11). Montreal's Original Skyscraper: The Aldred Building. McGill School of Architecture. Retrieved on 2008-03-03.
  4. La Place d'Armes. Old Montreal Web site. Retrieved on 2008-03-20.
  5. Place-d'Armes Metro Station: Origin of station's name. Tour toponymique Les stations de métro, Communauté urbaine de Montréal, 1989. STM Web site. Retrieved on 2008-03-03.