The Place de la République is the center of the city of Arles. The several buildings that surround it can, alone, retrace the history of the city. The cryptoportiques located under the square date back to antiquity, just like the obelisk at the center of the square. There are also the church and the cloister of Saint Trophime from the 12th century. The Hôtel de Ville was built in the 17th century.
Place de la République, 13200 Arles
Solar and imperial symbol in Antiquity, the obelisk is made of granite. It measures, with its pedestal, twenty meters. The obelisk comes from the spina (central wall around which the track runs) of the Roman circus. It was installed in the 4th century. Just like the circus, the obelisk was abandoned from the 6th century onward, and collapsed. At its rediscovery it was placed on the Place Royale, in front of the new city hall, which the consuls chose to erect "for the greatest glory of Louis XIV." The royal symbol, a bronze globe surmounted by a sun, was added. Other changes were made over the course of the following centuries.