Passy Cemetery Paris
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Last Updated: 4 September 2017

The Passy Cemetery in the 16th arrondissement of Paris is the one of Paris’ largest operating cemeteries. The 4 acres funeral park is situated in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower are the burial places of painter Edouard Manet, comedian Fernandel, and composer Claude Debussy.

Passy Cemetery: a bit of history

Passy Cemetery Paris
The cemetery of Passy, Paris © French Moments

The cemetery was created in 1820 and became the preferred burial place for the aristocracy residing on the Right Bank. It replaced an older cemetery that served the village of Passy until 1802 (located rue Lekain). The burial place was enlarged several times between 1826 and 1854. It became part of the City of Paris when the commune of Passy was annexed in 1860.

Description of the Passy cemetery

Passy Cemetery Paris
The cemetery of Passy, Paris © French Moments

The Passy cemetery (Cimetière de Passy) has an area of 1.70 hectares. The small Passy cemetery is one of Paris’ large cemeteries that have been laid out outside the precincts of the old town: Montmartre Cemetery in the north, Père Lachaise in the east, and Montparnasse Cemetery in the south.

The monumental entrance gate and the reception pavillon (pavillon d’accueil) were designed by architect René Berger in 1934-1935. The cornice of the elegant pavillon is decorated with three bas-reliefs from sculptor Janthian (1935).

The cemetery includes some 2,615 burial plots held in perpetuity. It is divided into 15 sections (called divisions).

Some are simple tombstones, others are monumental graves and family mausoleums. More than 290 trees contribute to a certain romantic atmosphere (most notably chestnut trees).

As for other Parisian cemeteries, it is very difficult to be buried at the Passy cemetery which has strict rules about burials: only people who died in Paris or who had lived there may be buried there. Today the Passy cemetery is administratively part of the Montparnasse Cemetery.

Download the French version of the cemetery map with the most searched-for burial places.

Some of the most searched-for burial places

Passy Cemetery Paris
The grave of Edouard Manet, cemetery of Passy, Paris © French Moments

The local aristocracy and many famous people (writers, composers, musicians, politicians,  industrialists and scientists are buried at the Passy cemetery. Among the celebrities who chose Passy cemetery as their last resting place are:

  • Bảo Đại (1864-1942), last emperor of Viet-Nam
  • Francis Bouygues (1922-1993), entrepreneur, founder of French company Bouygues
  • Carnot family, politicians
  • Ernest Cognacq-Jay (1839-1928), entrepreneur and founder of La Samaritaine
  • Marcel Dassault (1892-1986), entrepreneur and engineer 
  • Claude Debussy (1862-1918), composer
  • Fernandel (1903-1971), comedian
  • Givenchy family, perfumers
  • Guerlain family, perfumers
  • Édouard Manet (1832-1883), painter
  • Renault family, car manufacturers
  • Haroun Tazieff (1914-1998), vulcanologist

Passy cemetery: Practical info

Passy Cemetery Paris
The cemetery of Passy, Paris © French Moments
  • To make the most of your visit download the map of the cemetery [in French] to save valuable time.
  • The main entrance is at 2, rue du Commandant-Schloesing. Entrance is free.
  • Closest métro station: Trocadéro (lines 6 and 9).

Opening times:

From 6th November to 15th March:
Monday to Friday: 8am to 5.30pm – Saturday: 8.30am to 5.30pm
Sundays and bank holidays: 9am to 5.30pm
From 16th March to 5th November:
Monday to Friday: 8am to 6pm – Saturday: 8.30am to 6pm
Sundays and bank holidays: 9am to 6pm 

There are no more admissions to the cemetery 15 min before closing time.

Inside the cemetery, do respect the dead, their families and others visitors by observing silence and behaving decently.

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About the author

Pierre is a French/Australian who is passionate about France and its culture. He grew up in France and Germany and has also lived in Australia and England. He has a background teaching French, Economics and Current Affairs, and holds a Master of Translating and Interpreting English-French with the degree of Master of International Relations, and a degree of Economics and Management. Pierre is the author of Discovery Courses and books about France.

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