Löwendenkmal - Lion Monument, Lucerne

4.5 out of 5 stars 45 Reviews

Don't miss these tickets and tour deals!
Get best Löwendenkmal - Lion Monument rates on Viator
  • Löwendenkmal - Lion Monument
    by machomikemd
  • Löwendenkmal - Lion Monument
    by machomikemd
  • Löwendenkmal - Lion Monument
    by machomikemd

Been here? Rate It!

hide
  • machomikemd's Profile Photo

    Monument to Fallen Swiss Soldiers

    by machomikemd Updated Nov 18, 2015

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    about a kilometer away from the old town or about 800 meters away from Schwanenplatz along Denkmalstrasse (about a brisk 10 minute walk) is the famous Löwendenkmal, otherwise known as the Lion Monument. It is a tribute to the famous Swiss Guards who were employed by King Louis XVI as mercenaries who were massacred in 1792 during the French Revolution at the Tuileries Palace in Paris (about 300 of them survived). The Monument was made into the granite rockface in a mortally-wounded lion measuring ten meters in length and six meters in height and facing a man made pool. the sculture was designed by Danish sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen and made by Lucas Ahorn, a stone-mason from Constance Germany and was made in August 10, 1821 from funds solicited by a member of the swiss guards who was then at leave in Lucerne, Karl Pfyffer von Altishofen, to honor his fallen comrades.

    according to Wikipedia:

    the latin incription at the site means:

    The monument is dedicated Helvetiorum Fidei ac Virtuti ("To the loyalty and bravery of the Swiss"). The dying lion is portrayed impaled by a spear, covering a shield bearing the fleur-de-lis of the French monarchy; beside him is another shield bearing the coat of arms of Switzerland. The inscription below the sculpture lists the names of the officers and gives the approximate numbers of soldiers who died (DCCLX = 760), and survived (CCCL = 350).[2]

    The monument is described by Thomas Carlyle in The French Revolution: A History.[3] The pose of the lion was copied in 1894 by Thomas M. Brady (1849–1907)[4] for his Lion of Atlanta in the Oakland Cemetery in Atlanta, Georgia.

    Admission is free and the site is open 24/7.

    Address: Denkmalstrasse 4, 6002 Luzern, Switzerland

    Directions: Denkmalstrasse 4, 6002 Luzern, Switzerland

    Phone: +41 41 227 17 17

    Website: http://www.luzern.com/de/lion-monument

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Museum Visits
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • black_mimi99's Profile Photo

    Löwendenkmal (Lion Monument)

    by black_mimi99 Written Nov 11, 2015

    Just north of Löwenplatz is the famous Lion Monument, a huge figure of a dying lion carved out of a wall of sandstone rock above a pond at the east end of the medieval town. It was designed by Thorwaldsen in 1820, the monument commemorates the death of 26 officers and more than 700 troops of the Swiss Guards, mercenary soldiers who were killed while protecting King Louis XVI during the attack on the Tuileries in the French Revolution in 1792.

    L��wendenkmal (Lion Monument) L��wendenkmal (Lion Monument)
    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • Odiseya's Profile Photo

    Lion from Luzern

    by Odiseya Updated Sep 26, 2015

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    During my visit to the city it was raining day and I left my umbrella in the car. Still, it was no reason to skip the famous monument in Luzern.

    The Lion Monument (German: Löwendenkmal) commemorate the Swiss Guards who were massacred in 1792 during the French Revolution, when revolutionaries stormed the Tuileries Palace in Paris, France.

    Great advantages on visiting this site on great weather is taking photos on lion reflection in lake in front of it but I was there on summer rain day and this is still on my list.

    Lion from Luzern
    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Historical Travel
    • Photography

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • Maryimelda's Profile Photo

    Lowendenkmal (The Lion of Lucerne))

    by Maryimelda Updated Feb 23, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I guess no one goes to Lucerne without making an effort at least, to visit the dying lion monument.
    It is no wonder that Mark Twain was so very impressed with this massive sculpture which measure 6 meters high by 10 meters across. It was sculpted in 1820 by Lukas Ahorn from an inspired design by Bertal Thorvaldsen and is sculpted right into the face of the cliff which overlooks a pool.

    The monument was created to pay homage to the 600 Swiss Guards who were massacred in 1792 during the French Revolution as they stalwartly carried out their commission which was to protect King Louis then resident at the Tuilleries Palace in Paris.

    There are many symbolic elements to the monument. Depicted impaled on a spear with one paw over a shield bearing the standard of the French Monarchy and another paw placed over a shield portraying the coat of arms of Switzerland, I could well understand why Mark Twain described it as the most moving monument in the world.

    Lion of Lucerne
    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Historical Travel
    • Photography

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • Phalaenopsis03's Profile Photo

    Lion Monument

    by Phalaenopsis03 Updated Sep 25, 2011

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    One of the "must see" attractions in Lucerne is the Lion Monument, a memorial for the Swiss soldiers who died in battle serving France's King Louis XVI during the French Revolution. The sculpture depicts a dying lion and was carved out of a rock face. Above the lion reads the Latin inscription HELVETIORUM FIDEI AC VIRTUTI, which translated into English means "To the loyalty and bravery of the Swiss". From an artistic perspective, the Lion Monument is truly a beautiful piece of work that conveys such sadness and sorrow.

    Interesting to note, but if you look closely, you'll notice that the surrounding outline of the lion resembles the shape of a pig. Apparently, the sculptor had a falling out with someone associated with the contracting of the memorial that he created the pig shape out of spite. Ouch!

    Directions: Head northwest of Lowenplatz.

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • joanj's Profile Photo

    The Lion of Lucerne

    by joanj Updated Aug 21, 2009

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Lion Monument was sculpted in the early 1800's by the Danish Artist Bertel Thorvaldson who was hired to sculpt a momument to the fallen Swiss Officers and Guards, numbering over 700 who were guarding King Louis XV1, Marie Antoinette and their children during the French Revolution.

    Read about it on the website.

    Address: http://europeforvisitors.com/switzaustria/articles

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • riorich55's Profile Photo

    The Lion of Lucerne Monument

    by riorich55 Updated May 12, 2009

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Several years ago just before we started planning our first European trip I read a book called the Lions of Lucerne by Brad Thor who just so happens to have grown up in Chicago and still lives part time in Chicago when he is not in his second home on a Greek Island. The Lions of Lucerne was his 1st book in 2002 and now his books routinely make the NY Times Bestseller list.

    With that said I knew that when we went to Switzerland (my dream country since I started collecting stamps over 45 years ago) we would have to see this monument. Just a few facts which I'm sure have been related on other VT pages before me.

    The sculpture was created in 1820 - 1821 to commemorate the mercenary soldiers who died protecting the King and Queen of France who had already departed (we didn't find them there either when we visited). The Swiss saying behind the monument translates to "To The Loyalty and Bravery of the Swiss". Below the lion are the Greek numbers DCCLX and CCCL which indicate that 760 soldiers died and 350 survived. The monument is 20 feet high and 33 feet long and was carved on an upright wall which was the remnants of the towns quarry which supplied the sandstore that built many of the buildings in Lucerne.

    The Long View of the Lion The Short View of the Lion
    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Family Travel
    • Study Abroad

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • pure1942's Profile Photo

    Lion Monument

    by pure1942 Updated May 9, 2008

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The first thing that struck me about the Lion Monument in Lucerne is the size of it. From pictures that I had seen I had expected a much smaller sculpture but the Lion is quite large. The 'Dying Lion of Lucerne' is a monument to the fallen Swiss soldiers at the battle of Tuileries, Paris in 1792 when French Revolutionaries attacked the palace.
    The monument was sculptued out of solid granite rock in the side of a natural cliff of rock just to the north Lake Lucerne. Mark Twain once described the monument as "the saddest and most moving piece of rock in the world" and I would agree, as the piece is filled with emotion enhanced by the tranquility and peace of the artificial lake in frint of it. THe monument was erected in 1820.

    Address: Lowenstrasse

    Directions: From Kapellbrucke walk north onto Schweizerhofquai and turn left onto Lowenstrasse. Walk up this road and you will see the entrance to the monument park on your left.

    Dying Lion of Lucerne Dying Lion of Lucerne Dying Lion of Lucerne Dying Lion of Lucerne
    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo

    Lion Symbol in Placid Pond

    by BruceDunning Updated Nov 19, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The stone carving is commemorating the dead 750 Swiss soldiers that fought in Paris during French Revolution in 1792. The chiseled monument was done by Bertel Thorvaldsen in 1820, with the help of some novice stone masons/artists. It took 1 years to complete. The close by toilet in Asian theme is a trip, and you should use it as well as the little cabana type structure nearby.

    Lion sleeping
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • colin_bramso's Profile Photo

    Lion Monument

    by colin_bramso Updated Oct 22, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    "The saddest and most moving piece of rock in the world"
    Mark Twain

    I agree, it is the most moving experience to look at the sad face on the dying lion. It really is a remarkable piece of art, carved out of a solid sandstone cliff-face. The lion's face is unforgettable.

    It commemorates more than 700 Swiss officers & soldiers who died defending the Tuileries Palace in Paris during the French Revolution in 1792. They believed that King Louis XVI, Marie-Antoinette and their children were sheltering inside, when in fact they had been smuggled out.

    The sculpture was carved in 1820/21 by Bertel Thorvaldsen, a Dane.

    Directions: To the right of Bucherer watch store on the waterfront take Alpenstrasse or Lõwenstrasse to the Löwenplatz, then along Denkmalstrasse. There are signs to the monument.

    Lion Monument, Lucerne The dying lion The saddest face.

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • fishandchips's Profile Photo

    Lion Monument

    by fishandchips Updated Sep 30, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    This is one of the most amazing pieces of art in the world. Carved out of the rock face in memory of the Swiss guard killed in the line of duty - sort of - protecting France's Louis XIV.

    The guard were killed to a man after being ordered to drop their pikes as Louis thought that 'his people' loved him and wouldn't do any damage - Doh!!

    The Lion's pain is there for all to see and this is the most amazing thing about this monument - the Lion looks like is really in pain, close to death with a broken pike in its side (symbolising the pikes of the Swiss Guard killed with their own pikes).

    Lion Monument
    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Religious Travel
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • globetrott's Profile Photo

    The Lion-monument / the Sleeping Lion

    by globetrott Written Jan 10, 2007

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Das Loewendenkmal / The Lion-monument was built in 1820 in order to memorize the 750 swiss soldiers that were sent to Paris in 1792 in order to fight against the troups of the French revolution. All of them lost their lives in the battles defending the Tuilleries.
    Mark Twain once said that this Sleeping Lion of Lucerne is the "sadest and most moving piece of rock in the world"
    this touching monument was made by the danish artist Bertel Thorvaldsen .

    Directions: The Lion-monument is not far from Hofkirche : When walking Schweizerhofquai from Schwanenplatz to Hofkirche, take Loewenstrasse to the left and walk to Loewenplatz. The monument is there in a park to the right, next to Gletschergarten !

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Arts and Culture
    • Architecture

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • sandysmith's Profile Photo

    The Dying Lion of Lucerne

    by sandysmith Updated Sep 23, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Dying Lion of Lucerne Monumen is surely one of the world's most famous monuments. Hewn out of natural rock in 1812 in memory of the heroic death of the Swiss guards at the Tuileries in 1792. I always find this monument very powerful and quite emotive personally - this is how I picture Aslan in CS Lewis's book 'The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe' when he dies.

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • sswagner's Profile Photo

    The Lion Monument

    by sswagner Written Jun 26, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Although this monument is well known amongst the bus tours, it is worth a look. The lion is a rock sculpture in the face of a small cliff. Beneath it is a pond so that people cannot get too close. It commemorates the Swiss guards who died defending the monarchs in the French Revolution. There are inscriptions around the memorial. No admission is charged to see the monument. For those walking to it, there are signs that will point the way.

    Lowendenkmal
    Related to:
    • Trains
    • Budget Travel
    • Historical Travel

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner
  • Applelyn's Profile Photo

    Hear the Lion cry!

    by Applelyn Updated Jun 12, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Lion Monument is an important monument in the city. The sleeping Lion, another named for it, was built in 1821 in honour to all Swiss Guards who had died in a battle in Paris. They were defending the French Royal family against the Paris revolutionaries in the Tuleries Palace. Being born in Lucerne and then the city decided to make this nice sculpture in the mountain's rock to remember these soldiers. You can see the pain on the lion's face distinctively.

    The Lion The gates to the monument
    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

    Add to your Trip Planner

Instant Answers: Lucerne

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

21 travelers online now

Comments