Rus Articles Journal

The provincial without complexes. Part II

the Beginning

Before revolution of mayors was chosen in St. Philibert`s church. Now this ancient temple is almost always closed from - for emergency states. The city authorities do not even know how to be risen to restoration... the Russian option of “remake“ under the guise of rescue of a monument will not pass in Dijon. Business complicates still that, as well as in any French town, “discussion“, that is communication of the elected power with very active civil organizations is always the cornerstone of any decision...

Symbols and mascots chose


Before revolution of mayors in St. Philibert`s church. Now this ancient temple is almost always closed from - for emergency states. The city authorities do not even know how to be risen to restoration... the Russian option of “remake“ under the guise of rescue of a monument will not pass in Dijon. Business complicates still that, as well as in any French town, “discussion“, that is communication of the elected power with very active civil organizations is always the cornerstone of any decision...

the Main church of Dijon officially remains the cathedral of the Saint of Benin, the patron of the city constructed in the 11th century. Exactly here Shanmol remains of dukes Burgundian were transferred after destruction of a family tomb in abbey.

However citizens long since gave preference to a Gothic cathedral Notr - I Will give, located near the city market and not having any relation to any power. Its construction began on the place of the chapel of the same name in 1220. Thirty years later the cathedral already stood. Initially, as it is got in a gothic style, his facade was decorated by chimeras - so far one of them did not fall down the parishioner`s head. The legend says that it occurred at a wedding of the local usurer. The groom was killed on the spot: so the God`s trial of “blood-sucker“ came true. In any case, debtors of the dead for certain wanted to be trusted in it. Perhaps, being afraid of so fast God`s punishment, other prosperous citizens demanded from the authorities to clean dangerous sculptures. And they were really moved away, having left only couple. Those numerous chimeras which we see today, - much later. They were returned on a facade in the 19th century on the project of the architect Lagul.

A here the “original“ wooden sculpture of the Mother of God exposed to the right of an altar - one of the most ancient in all France. It was transferred to a new cathedral from the old chapel standing on its place. The sculpture was cut out by the unknown master in the 11th century. Then it was only swarty, but in the XVI-XVII centuries it was recoloured for some reason in black color. During one of recent restorations returned to a statue a former shade, however which - where the name “black Mother of God“ along with standard - Kind Nadezhda`s Mother of God still occurs in stories about it. It is considered that thanks to its protection the city was twice relieved of conquerors. On September 11, 1513, after the statue was solemnly carried by on streets, Swisses unexpectedly raised a siege. In September, 1944, after disembarkation in Normandy of troops English - Americans, Germans decided to use Dijon as one of the main points of defense. On September 10 the bishop made a prayer, asking the Virgin to protect the city, and on September 11 - in that day when it was once relieved of Swisses, - nazis suddenly left Dijon so liberators could occupy it without fight and losses.

... During walk on a cathedral the man of average years approached me: I saw how it, being kneeling, a small brush cleaned a red carpet in an altar. Monsieur Jean is not the priest, but in free time helps to watch purity and order in a cathedral. Having learned that I am the Russian journalist, it is let in a philosophical reasoning on the Russian and French revolutions. It is extremely interesting to listen to it: at us in the country almost do not tell about it though here really it is possible to find many parallels.

“And still, after our revolution and destruction the new basis for development arose, and after yours there was only an emptiness“, - draws a conclusion, worthy the real Frenchman, monsieur Jean. “By the way, you already heard history of our druggist Bernard? Is not present? Then go, I will show you revolution fruits!“

We come to a church porch, and my new acquaintance points a finger at arches over an entrance: “Et voila!“ Only now I notice that all figures are broken there. It appears, from February, 1794 to July, 1796 the druggist by the name of Bernard came from Shodroneri Street here every day in the morning as for work (the benefit, these two years to churches there was no service), and methodically broke medieval sculptures. Then the new power its initiative seemed top of civil consciousness. “And now the owner of the next drugstore asks not to say that Bernard was his colleague - say supposedly that he was just a handicraftsman. It is visible, is afraid that to it will cease to go behind drugs“, - monsieur Jean finishes and adds after a short pause:“ But I all the same tell how was actually“. Then, in revelry of revolutionary passions, Kind Nadezhda`s Mother of God lost the Baby - in 1794 the crowd of revolutionary inhabitants rushed into church, the statue was overturned and little Jesus`s sculpture disappeared from Madonna`s knees.

Opposite, over time “the mechanical figure Zhakmar on hours of a cathedral tower - one more “antiquity“ of which dizhonets are proud got

posterity“. As a trophy gift the duke Philip Smely from Flanders brought hours to citizens - there it helped the father-in-law to pacify the rebellious cities, in particular Kurtre where in eighty years before French suffered cruel defeat. Grateful dizhonets established a wonder on a roof of a cathedral of the Mother of God and quickly got used to the new iron citizen. Already six centuries he smokes the tubule and philosophically looks at the people. It was decided to brighten up Zhakmar`s loneliness later - on a roof of a cathedral there was one more mechanical figure, Jacqueline. So compelled emigrant from Kurtre found the wife. In the 18th century the family got also the son - to Zhaklina, and in 1885 the daughter Zhaklinet was added to him. Adults in turn “tick“ a hammer hours, children help them each 15 and 30 minutes.

Subtlety 5. All this touching story received continuation already presently: in the sixties to Dijon with goodwill visit the Belgian Kurtre`s mayor glanced and asked the local mayor (Cyrus was it just) about a favor: to return hours home. Cyrus smiled and answered: “If Zhakmar was a bachelor... but we cannot separate the French family!“

At last, the city symbol in recent years loved the stone owl who “lodged“ on a cathedral wall Notr several centuries ago became em - I Will give. On one of legends, the medieval master immortalized the favourite whom never left after death. So it was or not, but modern dizhonets trust: the touch to an owl the left hand will bring good luck. Before examination students surely jump on the narrow small street to touch a wise bird. Certainly, newlyweds come here “for luck“ after a wedding ceremony into the city halls or into churches too. It is worth lingering for several minutes on Sovy Street - and at once you will see: nobody will pass by, without having touched a stone mascot.

interest of passersby in it is round the clock watched, by the way, by police. And all because in the night of January 6, 2001 fought the left side off an owl. Dizhontsa were excited and offended - someone dared to touch their charm! Owl carefully restored and mounted the round-the-clock tracking camera... so, touching an owl, smile - you in a shot! Also do not worry - law enforcement officers protect also you.

the Quality marks

can go further on “an owl`s track“ From here: the stone sculpture on a cathedral of the Mother of God at will of city tourist`s bureau had many “owlets“ - metal tablichkiukazatel on asphalt designate the main tourist route on the city.

we Will tell

, on the same small street there is a house of the merchant Guillaume Milier built in 1483. On the first floor there was a bench - the stone counter lived up to now, and here a deaf sun blind all - replaced with showcase glasses. On the second there lived the dealer with the members of household. The facade is decorated hammered together a cross - on - a cross with boards - here it is possible to see not just construction fixture, but a symbol of Burgundy, the Andreevsky cross.

Subtlety 6. the House of monsieur Milyer is known now by all France - on his background the part of events in the movie “Sirano De Bergerac“ where the big-nosed poet was played by Gerard Depardieu is developed.

A quite recently directly opposite “Sirano`s Houses“ restored one more medieval building. In it the coziest gingerbread shop in the city was placed. The friendly Dijon family - Mark and Annette Planshar owns it, as long-term rent. Sweets do here, in the cellar, - it is possible to go down and look. And at the same time and to listen to the story about history of Dijon gingerbreads. To have breakfast them. Or to drink aperitif - too with gingerbreads. However, the Dijon pastries can seem to the Russian person for want of habit presnovaty. What is unsurprising: citizens not only regale on it for a dessert - in crackers from gingerbreads roll cutlets, and do “canape“ with roquefort cheese of them, a fu - a gr, and even smear with vegetable caviar them... mustard!

If the speech about a gastronomy came - no visit to Dijon can do without visit of the local markets. There is a lot of them, and during the revolutionary period, by the way, there was even more - most willingly turned religious constructions into the markets and grocery warehouses: in church of Saint - Etienne arranged a grain warehouse, in Seong - Jean - cheese, in Seong - Philibert - salt and developed trade in wine. And the main city covered Al`s Le market built in 1870 - x years on a sample Parisian, was also stretched on the church place. As well as in a capital prototype, here noninflammable metal arch designs combine utility and grace. Quality of products also at the highest level - the benefit, to rural areas no distance, and Dijon for quite some time now is famous as the center of agricultural developments and technologies: The national institute of agronomical researches was open here right after war.

“Owl`s track“ goes through all old Dijon - it is nearly hundred hectares and about 3000 buildings protected as “historical monuments“. A “semi-antique“ remake among them - unless unusual signs, since 1984 the government of Dijon with might and main encouraged their installation on old buildings.

not only the gothic style, the Renaissance or classicism, but also the XX century occur Among several thousand monuments of architecture. Hotel where we lodged, - the beautiful building in style are - a sound board. The facade remained untouched though indoors now not inhabited apartments as earlier, and an ant hill of standard hotel rooms (my neighbors are cyclists from England and mediocre French officials in business trip...) . On the contrary - the solemn building of post office built on Louis Perrault`s project and his house in style are - Nouveau with roofs in the form of the Chinese pagodas where today the most successful live “Dijon shopkeepers“ as called local bourgeoises at the beginning of 1930 - x Henry Miller. In the “Tropic of Cancer“ which it began here the first impression of the main character of the city is described.“ Having descended from the train, I right there understood that I made a fatal flaw. In the downtown there was a set of cafe, empty and boring where sleepy Dijon shopkeepers were going to play cards and to listen to music. The best that it is possible to tell about these cafes, - in them excellent ovens and convenient chairs. Unoccupied prostitutes for a glass of beer or a cup of coffee willingly sat down by your little table to chat. But music was terrible. In winter evening in such dirty hole as Dijon, there is nothing worse, than sounds of the French little band. Especially if it is one of sad female ensembles... everything was gloomy, cold, gray here, is sad and hopeless“.

Today Dijon cafes lost all “millerovsky“ originality. In them there is neither disgusting music, nor the local girls ready “on everything“ for a glass red, the boredom generating unartful defect. Cafe in Dijon now same, as well as in any other city of France: pure and light. To smoke still which - where is possible, but already not everywhere. For half an hour up to one closing bigger do not pour - the law does not allow. Now behind “millerovsky“ spirit it is necessary to go not to Dijon, and to developing countries...

Not the first - and not the last

In the millerovsky description of Dijon appears typically capital snobbery. On the contrary, other Parisian, Hugo, estimated provincial charm of Dijon, having called it “the charming city, melancholic and pleasant“. It is no wonder that there is a prospectus of his name whereas nothing reminds of Miller unless Carnot`s college where he taught for a bed and harch. However, here it is possible to see also simple manifestation of the French egocentrism.

“I had a lot of time and not a stiver in a pocket. Two - three hours a day I had to lead lessons of colloquial English - that`s all. And why to these poor creatures English?“ Really, what for? And today`s dizhonets differ from other residents of France as regards interest in foreign languages a little: it is better to come with knowledge of French here. it is difficult to p to present to

that once the city was famous for the cosmopolitism: at Valois`s dukes here as we remember, masters from all Europe gathered. Now the show-window of hat shop on one of lateral small streets in the center seemed me the only echo of spirit of that time. You will not meet it even in the capital. I long considered in it... no, not goods - exhibits: from the Mexican sombreros and real “hats“, from dandified gangster “borsalino“ to the Basque berets and ladies` hats which are put on now unless the British aristocracy on receptions yes by the French provincials “to a Sunday mass“...

among Dijon crowd can unexpectedly hear the Slavic speech.

Subtlety 7. at the beginning of the XX century law department of the Burgundian university was ended by Eduard Benesh, subsequently - the president of Czechoslovakia. From its giving in 1920 - x years the exchange between the Czech and Slovak higher education institutions and by that Carnot`s college where Miller taught a bit later was adjusted. After that communication between Dijon and Eastern Europe several times was interrupted, did not endure new rise yet in 1990 - x when one more college “contacted“ Poles. All this led to the fact that a few years ago the prestigious Parisian School of political sciences opened the branch specializing in the Central and Eastern Europe in Dijon.


reconciled long ago with the fact that their city not “first“ and even not “second“ in the country. But completely they were not going to hand over positions and do not gather. When in the middle of the XX century had to lay a direct branch line Paris - Lyon, residents of Dijon should have achieved considerable works that it passed and “through them“ - while many other cities were not shown then to the railroad of a particular interest... In 80 - x years of last century the situation repeated: this time there was an idea of the high-speed line. And again locals managed to insist on that trains went through their city. Now them the fact that planes fly from Dijon abroad only through Paris worries...

In a pursuit of “prosperity“ local authorities do not want to endow, however, either a habitual measured rhythm, or a cosiness and conveniences of a small town. In historic centers of modern megalopolises gardens and gardens often disappear, giving way to parkings. In Dijon it is excluded, and its parks will be envied by many capitals.

Is here and city squares, like Sadah Darci located near the “modern“ area and something reminding city park in Kursk or Taganrog... unless in the evening there does not sit, having put legs on benches, local youth with beer bottles - under the French laws all parks are closed exactly at eight in the evening, and the affable security guard will with own hand expose vsekh who did not hear its whistle. Certainly, in a garden there is also a rotunda in “resort“ style, and the bridge... To our latitudes also the figure of a polar bear “sends“. The polar handsome - the copy from work of the famous sculptor - the animal painter Francois Pompon who worked some time in Dijon.

Besides, the city is famous for the botanical gardens. You remember the figure of “gardener“ decorating the estate Shambellan? It became one of city symbols long ago: the local gardening tradition traces the roots back to depth of centuries.

Subtlety 8. the Corporation of representatives of this profession exists here since 1685. Today she not only is responsible for professional solidarity, but also for the device of traditional holidays, like a September flower procession. In the city there are whole gardening dynasties where the craft is transferred from the father to the son, from generation to generation. The representative such removed in the 19th century a popular grade of a rose Slava Dizhona. And one more fact: time in three years the gardening Florissimo exhibition attracts the number of visitors equal 150 - to the thousand population of the city.

the Famous mayor Cyrus laid a hand to landscaping of Dijon and vicinities too. Its environment, in general, managed to get used and reconcile to the fact that the canon is a lot of and willingly built - for example, at it the hospital complex in Le Bocage grew and the university campus was equipped. However when the mayor - the dreamer declared that the city needs the big and beautiful lake, officials protested. Proved to it that in the summer it will inevitably blossom and on it clouds of mosquitoes will appear not to mention that all this is too expensive for the city hall. To Cyrus even suggested to build in exchange the pool, however from “a foot bathtub“ - so the city`s mayor characterized the alternative project - he flatly refused. In 1960 - x years, despite general hostility, Cyrus literally imposed to the City Council a pond construction on the river Ush. Today a reservoir with its sand beach and adjacent park - one of favourite vacation spots of citizens, especially in hot weather.

... Access of public to Philip Dobry`s tower is closed at five in the evening. Certainly, it does not suit us: there is a wish to remove the city in “mode“ that is when the sky not finally darkened, and streetlights were already lit. A short instant of happiness for any photographer. Report on our request on the mayor. That quite understands us and gives personal permission again to overcome 316 steps to look at evening Dijon. But here it becomes clear that none of employees, “assigned to a tower“, with us will get - it is already overtime work. And without maintenance it is impossible to rise by a tower. We are helped out by Stephanie - our curator from Dijon bureau of tourism. Here all know it and willingly allow to keep us the company. Zhakmar beats off nine evening. The rain drizzling all day as by request, stops. Dijon shows us all beauty of the autumn evening...


It is removed! We go down, and here it becomes clear that the door of the 18th century can be opened only from outer side now. I think of history of the duke Bara wistfully... and also hours-long sitting in the Moscow elevator. What to do? Stephanie calls the husband. The husband - in police. Police - to us. In a few minutes the door is opened. The law enforcement officer in all right the blue form sitting on him with a smile tells us: “You are free!“

B of evening emptiness - a special charm of the French province. As before, in Dijon get up early and early go to bed. Show-windows of shops either are not lit at all, or one shines, “on duty“, a bulb. I come back to hotel under Stephanie`s reasonings on her city with cancelled capital destiny and its inhabitants:“ Now it is difficult to find the real Parisian. It either Bretons, or elzasets or emigrants. And here we fully feel as dizhonets“. And involuntarily I think that everything that becomes - to the best: having lost the capital status and not having had an opportunity to rule the world, the city of dukes of Valois managed to keep the style and to find golden mean between the impudent commitment to excellence and wise pleasure which is already reached.