The Lion Monument is dedicated to the Swiss Guard killed during the French Revolution. Over 800 died, either in fighting to defend the King of France during the August 10th, 1792 attack on the Tuileries Palace, or were murdered after that fighting, or were killed in prison during the September Massacres. Fewer than 400 of the Swiss Guard survived.
A former officer started a collection in 1818 for the monument, which was completed in 1821 in Lucerne, Switzerland, in a disused quarry. The sculptor wasn't paid his full price, so instead of defacing the statue and the dead, he carved the nook in the shape of a pig.
Mark Twain wrote "The place is a sheltered, reposeful woodland nook, remote from noise and stir and confusion — and all this is fitting, for lions do die in such places, and not on granite pedestals in public squares fenced with fancy iron railings."
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