Also known as: Hôtel des Invalides, Invalides, Les
City of Paris
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The Hôtel des Invalides was originally built during the reign of Louis XIV as a veterans' hospital and retirement home. The project then expanded to include army staff offices and parade grounds, and ultimately a chapel (l'Église Saint-Louis des Invalides). Shortly after the veterans' chapel was completed Louis asked for a separate royal chapel, which is now known as l'Église du Dôme; it was modeled after the dome of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome and is considered a masterpiece of Baroque architecture in France. Under the dome and in the vaults below are the final resting places of many of France's military greats, most notably Napoleon and members of his family, as well as Marshal Ferdinand Foch, Commander-in-Chief of the Allied Armies during World War I; the heart of Sébastien Le Prestre de Vauban, France's greatest military architect; and WWII-era Marshals Philippe Leclerc and Jean de Lattre de Tassigny. Also in the Les Invalides complex is France's national Army Museum, which was founded in 1794.
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