Prague meets Paris: the Reception and Representation of the 'Eiffelka'

Martha Kuhlman, Bryant University

Document Type Article

Published in Modernism/modernity(MoMo), Volume 14, Issue 2, Pages 291-308. Project Muse subscribers may access this article here.
DOI: 10.1353/mod.2007.0040


The tower was built by Alexander Gustave Eiffel with the assistance of M. Koechlin, E . Nougier and architect Sauvester for the World's Fair in 1889. It was long regarded with distrust, and at the conclusion of its construction, Eiffel himself was the first to ascend to the top. Verlaine, who usually doesn't venture beyond the limits of the Latin quarter, let himself be conveyed there by carriage. But upon seeing it, he fled from the "monster." Later the Eiffelka's praises started to be sung by poets. Cocteau calls it a "lace giraffe, " Apollinaire the "shepherd of bleating bridges; " it appears on the canvases of the Douanier Rousseau, Delaunay, etc.