Montmartre is a hill in the north of Paris, France, in the 18th arrondissement, a part of the Right Bank, primarily known for the white-domed Basilica of the Sacré Cœur on its summit. The other, older, church on the hill is Saint Pierre de Montmarte, which claims to be the location at which the Jesuit order of priests was founded. The community on the hill is also called "Montmartre".
When Napoleon III and his city planner Baron Haussmann planned to make Paris the most beautiful city in Europe, a first step was to grant large sweeps of land near the center of the city to Haussmann's friends and financial supporters. This drove the original inhabitants to the edges of the city — to the districts of Clichy, La Villette, and the hill with a view of the city, Montmartre.
Since Montmartre was outside the city limits, free of Paris taxes and no doubt also due to the fact that the local nuns made wine, the hill quickly became a popular drinking area. The area developed into a center of free-wheeling and decadent entertainment at the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. In the popular cabaret the Moulin Rouge, and at Le Chat Noir, artists, singers and performers regularly appeared including Yvette Guilbert, Marcelle Lender, Aristide Bruant, La Goulue, Georges Guibourg, Mistinguett, Fréhel, Jane Avril, Damia and others.
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