Opened on Ile Saint-Louis in 1759, the Café Théâtre was one of Paris' premiere coffee houses for decades. Intellectuals, poets, philosophers and actors flocked to its tables, and the salon was a center for political debate and discussion. Over the years, though, cafés like the Café Procope gradually supplanted it in prominence. By 1790, Café Théâtre was a shabby, rundown place, more likely to host a second-rate bawdy comedy show than an impassioned debate. It experienced a resurgence during the Revolution, and even opened several satellite locations around Paris, and remained a fixture of the city's intelligentsia through World War I.*
* It was also a central clearinghouse for the Parisian Brotherhood's intelligence gathering network, a concept that is so adorably French I don't even have the words for it.

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