Statues - Hither & Thither

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Cours National / Avenue Paul Pelisse
(Square M.R. Štefánik)

L'Aviateur Général Štefánik

Milan Ratislav Štefánik
Košariská 1880 - Ivanka pri Dunaji 1919 in air crash
Slovak politician, diplomat, and astronomer.
General of the French Army and Czechoslovak Minister of War
Bohumil Kafka & Franta Bělský

Paulhan /  L'Aviateur Général Štefánik   Paulhan /  L'Aviateur Général Štefánik


Bronze statue by Kafka on a pedestal. A bronze plaque by Bělský was added in 1989.


en hommage
au general d'aviation
21.7.1880 - 4.5.1919
grand officier
dans l'ordre de la legion d'honneur
astronome, pilote de guerre,
organisatuer des legions tchecoslovaques
en france, en italie, en russie et en serbie.
ministre de la guerre de la tchecoslovaquie.

mort en accident d'avion sur sa terre natale.

ce monument a pu etre acheve grace
a la participation et l'assistance de tous les
anciens combattants tchecoslovaques
sculpteur: e. bělský propriété / de l'état

Signed: b. kafka 1933 .di.c.l.


The statue was a gift of the French Minister of Culture in 1955 and was placed on the empty socle of the Soldat de l'An II, a monument 'à la gloire des armees de la revolution' from 1911, which was destroyed in 1942. It was given to replace the soldier with an other soldier... Since it had no identification, the statue was known as 'L'Aviateur'. In 1984 the statue was recognized by coincidence by Alexander Matus, a Slovak air force officer, who retired in the Languedoc.

There was a relation of Štefánik with Paulhan:
Štefánik enlisted in the French army to become an aviator. He was sent as a pilot to Serbia in May 1915 and flew a total of 30 missions over enemy territory. The Serbian campaign was unsuccessful, but French aviator Louis Paulhan (Pézenas 1883 - Saint-Jean-de-Luz 1963) is credited with the world's first "medevac" when he flew the seriously ill Milan Stefanik to safety.

Košariská, where the general was born, and Brezová pod Bradlom, where the memorial for the general is located, are since 2000 twin towns of Paulhan.

An identical statue is in Prague's Petřín.


Sources & Information


  • Country: France
  • Army Officer
  • Aviator
  • Bělský, Franta
  • Kafka, Bohumil
  • Statue
  • Štefánik, Milan Ratislav
  • War Memorial (France - WWI)
  • Location (N 43°32'23" - E 3°27'30")

    Item Code: frlr017; Photograph: 8 September 2011
    Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
    If you want to use photos, please contact us via the contact form (in Dutch, English or German).
    © Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt

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