Montgolfier Balloon, De Rozir & d'Arlandes, 1783 - stock photo
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Montgolfier Balloon, De Rozir & d'Arlandes, 1783

Jean-Francois Pil√¢tre de Rozier (March 30 1754 - June 15, 1785) was a French chemistry and physics teacher. Francois Laurent le Vieux d'Arlandes (1742 - May 1, 1809) was a French marquis and soldier. Both were pioneers of hot air ballooning. Louis XVI decided that the first manned flight would contain two condemned criminals, but de Rozier believed the honor of becoming first balloonists should belong to someone of higher status and the Marquis d'Arlandes agreed to accompany him. The King was persuaded to permit them to become the first pilots. After several tethered tests to gain some experience of controlling the balloon, de Rozier and d'Arlandes made their first untethered flight in a Montgolfier hot air balloon on November 21, 1783, taking off at around 2 p.m. from the garden of the Ch√¢teau de la Muette. Their 25 minute flight travelled 5 miles to the southeast, attaining an altitude of 3,000 feet, before returning to the ground at the Butte-aux-Cailles.

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