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Musée de Cluny

The Musée de Cluny ("Cluny Museum", French pronunciation: ​[myze də klyni]), also known as Musée national du Moyen Âge – Thermes et hôtel de Cluny ("National Museum of the Middle Ages – Cluny thermal baths and mansion) , is a museum in Paris, France. It is located in the heart of the Latin quarter in Paris' 5th arrondissement at 6 Place Paul-Painlevé, south of the Boulevard Saint-Germain, between the Boulevard Saint-Michel and the Rue Saint-Jacques.

The Hôtel de Cluny is partially constructed on the remnants of the third century Gallo-Roman baths (known as the Thermes de Cluny, thermal baths from the Roman era of Gaul.) In fact, the museum itself actually consists of two buildings: the frigidarium ("cooling room"), within the vestiges of the Thermes de Cluny, and the Hôtel de Cluny itself, which houses its impressive collections. The frigidarium is about 6,000 square meters.

The museum houses one of the most important, global collections of objects and art from the Middle Ages. Among the principal holdings of the museum are the six The Lady and the Unicorn (La Dame à la licorne) tapestries.

Herman Melville visited Paris in 1849, and the Hôtel de Cluny evidently fired his imagination. The structure figures prominently in Chapter 41 of Moby-Dick, when Ishmael, probing Ahab's "darker, deeper" motives, invokes the building as a symbol of man's noble but buried psyche.

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