Le bourgeois à la clé (Jean d’Aire), 1895
Auguste Rodin (1840-1917)
In 1884 the sculptor Auguste Rodin was commissioned to produce a monument that commemorated the famous burghers of Calais. During the Hundred Years’ War five residents of Calais attempted to end the siege of their city by surrendering to the English besiegers. Rodin made a bronze group of extremely realistic figures; this group was not set on the same pedestal in order to allow passers-by to stand among the figures and thus experience how it might have felt to have been one of these men.