France: How to Cure a Falling Arch

How to Cure a Falling Arch

The Arc de Triomphe, that proud tribute to French glories in war, has been showing signs of age. Unsettled by shifting foundations and vibrations from traffic, the 151-year-old structure is crumbling. An unsightly nylon net now hangs like ill-fitting panty hose from its ornately carved arches to catch chunks of falling stone.

+ When the Paris office of American Express volunteered to help restore the monument, however, a sensitive national nerve was pricked. "Americans threaten to land on Arc de Triomphe," howled the daily Liberation. Last week the National Federation for Public Works called for a massive fund drive. The Paris...

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