On July 14, 1789, as the French citizenry stormed the feared Bastille in what would become the act of the French Revolution that most symbolized the overthrow of the monarchy, ideas of Google Doodles were more than 200 years away. Today, 222 years later, the Google Doodle recognizes the French national celebration and embraces its symbols.
The picture used for Google’s logo captures a simpler France with the trees adorned with lanterns in the national colors. People can be seen partying and there are party swirls at the right edge of the logo.
Bastille Day was started the first year after the storming of “the Fortress” as it translates. Lafayette, who had helped the U.S. with its own revolution a few years previously, proposed the holiday, though it was not made an official national holiday until 1880.
Fireworks and parties are thrown throughout France and the military march on the Bastille as part of the event.
Google has been celebrating the event since 2000 and it is the longest running Doodle for a national celebration outside of the United States, and is only beaten overall by 4th of July and Thanksgiving and other global events like Halloween and Christmas.