Saturday, April 21, 2012

Bergerac, France - June 28 2011

Bergerac, with a population of around 28,000, is in Dordogne department of the Aquitaine region of southwest France. The area offers some of the finest wines in the Bordeaux region and the town relies heavily on its tourist industry, one feature of which is a tobacco museum in which, unlike in all the other museums in town, no smoking is allowed.
Two statues of Cyrano de Bergerac, subject of a famous play of the same name by Edmond Rostand, can be found around town though the actual Cyrano never actually lived in Bergerac.
Hercule-Savinien de Cyrano de Bergerac, March 1619 to July 1655, was a French dramatist and duelist. He is best remembered however, through works of fiction loosely based on his life. The most notable of these is the 1897 play by Edmond Rostand. In all of these fictional works Cyrano is featured with a huge proboscis, for a glance of which, people would travel from miles around. Although portraits suggest that he did in fact have a supersized schnoz, it was not nearly as large as described in Rostand's and other's works. The model for the Roxane character of the Rostand play was Bergerac's cousin, who lived with his sister, Catherine de Cyrano, at the Convent of the Daughter of the Cross.
Cyrano de Bergerac's works The Other World: The States and Empires of the Moon and The States and Empires of the Sun are classics of early modern science fiction. His mixture of science and romance in these works likely influenced many subsequent writers such as Jonathan Swift, Edgar Alan Poe. Pictures of this dour town here.

No comments: