About Fort Saint Nicholas
Fort Saint Nicholas in Marseille is a fortification built by King Louis XIV between 1660 and 1664, supposedly to defend the city’s port, but also to quell the uprising of the people of the city against their governor. In fact, its guns, like those of its contemporary, Fort Saint Jean, pointed at the city, not away from it.
In the eighteenth century, Fort Saint Nicholas was used as a military prison and garrisoned. In 1790, during the French Revolution, the people of Marseille sacked Fort Saint Nicholas, however the Assemblée Nationale put an end to this destruction a mere month later.
Fort Saint Nicholas was then restored in the early nineteenth century – the newer parts are discernable because they are grey in colour as opposed to the pink of the original brickwork.