1. The public holiday in France on July 14th is not called “Bastille Day” at all! It is called “la Fête Nationale” (“The National Holiday), or “le Quatorze Juillet” (“July 14th”). July 14 commemorates the date that a group of anti-monarchists broke into the Bastille, a prison in central Paris, on July 14, 1789. The Bastille was rumored to have housed many political dissidents who were locked up by tyrannical rulers.