The French celebrated Bastille Day on Saturday with grandeur, military display and flypasts, in commemoration of the fall of the Bastille prison, the symbol of Bourbon tyranny.
Bastille Day symbolises the revolutionary zeal witnessed during the storming of the Bastille prison by a mob of Parisians on 14 July, 1789 which helped the beginning of the French Revolution.
The day was started celebrating as a national day in 1880 and was marked by military parades, colourful flypasts, aerial manoeuvres of military helicopters and jets and spectacular fireworks.
President Francois Hollande inspected the military parade before the Champs-élysées even though gusty winds and a downpour soaked his suit and clouded his spectacles.
One of the parachutists landed off the mark, about half a mile away from his target, the historic Place de la Concorde, because of fierce winds. Hollande stayed back after the parade to check on the injured jumper who had sprained his knee in the incident.
During his National Day speech, Hollande deplored industrial layoffs and pledged to clean up French politics. Carmaker Peugeot said on Thursday that it would cut 8,000 jobs in the country.
Though the newly elected French leader promised incentives to revive the industrial sector of the country and hinted at reduction of the national debt, he did not spell out the specifics.
"My mission is to help France recover and give it a future. Jobs are my priority," said Hollande in a traditional Bastille Day television interview which was scrapped by his predecessor Nicolas Sarkozy.
Hollande also mentioned the ongoing Syrian crisis in his speech and warned about the consequences if the nation plunges into a civil war.
"We must continue to apply pressure for the departure of Bashar al-Assad and for a political transition to take place," said Hollande.
"The worst thing that could happen would be to have a civil war," he added.
The French president shied away from commenting on the feud between his current companion Valerie Trierweiler and his ex-partner and sons.
"Private matters should be handled privately and I told those close to me that they should scrupulously respect this principle," said Hollande during the Saturday interview.
Take a look at spectacular images of Bastille Day celebrations on 14 July.