Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Bourge-en-Bresse, France - June 17, 2010 (Posted 8/17/2011)

Although there are some Roman remains in Bourg-en-Bresse, there is not much known about its early history. What is known is that it was granted the status of a free town in 1250 and in the 15th century was appointed the chief city of the province of Bresse. It is located in eastern France about 40 miles north-east of Lyon and 60 miles west of Geneva, Switzerland. Nowadays, it is the capital of the Ain department and has a population of 40,000 or so Burgiens, as the city folk have come to be called.
The 16th century Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-l'Annonciation de Bourg-en-Bresse shown in the slide show, sports a Renaissance façade while many of its other features are Gothic.
Among the statues in the town there is one of Edgar Quinet (1803–1875), a native of Bourg. Edgar was an historian and an intellectual who wrote pithy aphorisms such as "Time is the fairest and toughest judge." Perhaps his more visible gift to posterity is the eponymous station on the Paris Metro.
Marguerite of Bourbon, wife of Philip II of Savoy, had intended to found a monastery in Brou, a suburb of Bourg en Bresse, but died before doing so. Her daughter-in-law Marguerite of Austria, wife of Philibert le Beau of Savoy, eventually did build a church there in 1532.
Bourg-en-Bresse is not a tourist destination and the economy is largely supported by the manufacture of iron goods, mineral waters, tallow, soap and earthenware. There are also a number of flour mills and breweries.
For more scenes from around town, click here.

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