The Dreyfus Affair

The Dreyfus Affair was a political cover-up which divided France for many years in the late 19th century. [img]435|left|J’accuse![/img]It centered on the 1894 treason conviction of Alfred Dreyfus, a Jewish artillery officer in the French army. Dreyfus was, in fact, innocent: the conviction rested on false documents, and when high-ranking officers realised this they attempted to cover up the mistakes. The writer Emile Zola exposed the affair to the general public in the literary newspaper L’Aurore (The Dawn) in a […]

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Gaul

Gallia (in English Gaul) is the Roman name for the region of western Europe occupied by present-day France, Belgium, western Switzerland and the parts of the Netherlands and Germany on the left bank of the Rhine. In English the word Gaul also means one of the inhabitants of that region in ancient times. The Gauls sacked Rome circa 390 BC, destroying all Roman historical records to that point. Roman rule in Gaul was established by Julius Caesar, who defeated the […]

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Map of France

<!–^~^302|center|Map of France^~^–>   Area: total: 547,030 sq km land: 545,630 sq km water: 1,400 sq km note: includes only metropolitan France, but excludes the overseas administrative divisions Area – comparative: slightly less than twice the size of Colorado Land boundaries: total: 2,889 km border countries: Andorra 56.6 km, Belgium 620 km, Germany 451 km, Italy 488 km, Luxembourg 73 km, Monaco 4.4 km, Spain 623 km, Switzerland 573 km Coastline: 3,427 km Maritime claims: contiguous zone: 24 nm continental […]

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French History: Introduction

  The Fleur de Lys,the royal emblem History can be relived all throughout France. Prehistoric paintings decorate the walls of caves in the Southwest, whereas the Southeast is filled with bridges, acqueducts and amphitheaters built by the Romans over 2,000 years ago. The soaring spires of the great cathedrals are expressions of the religious faith that dominated the Middle Ages. Symbols of the Republic Royal grandeur and merchant wealth produced the Louvre and the immense ch‚teau of Versailles, the Loire […]

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Emile Zola

…mile Zola (April 2, 1840 – September 29, 1902) was an influential French novelist, the most important example of the literary school of naturalism and a major figure in the political liberalization of France. [img]439|left|Emile Zola[/img] Born in Paris, France, the son of an Italian engineer, …mile Zola spent his childhood in Aix-en-Provence and was educated at the CollËge Bourbon. At age 18 he would return to Paris where he studied at the LycÈe Saint-Louis. After working at several low-level […]

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Cathars

Catharism was a Gnostic heretical movement that originated around the middle of the 12th century AD. It existed throughout much of Western Europe, but its home was in Languedoc, in southern France. The name Cathars probably originated from catharos, the pure ones, maybe also from cattus cat which they were supposed to sexually abuse during their ceremonies, and one of the first recorded uses is Eckbert von Schˆnau who wrote on heretics from Cologne in 1181: Hos nostra germania catharos […]

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Regions of France

Regions oFrance has 26 rÈgions, which are further subdivided into dÈpartements. Alsace 67 Bas-Rhin 68 Haut-Rhin Aquitaine 24 Dordogne 33 Gironde 40 Landes 47 Lot-et-Garonne 64 PyrÈnÈes-Atlantiques Auvergne 03 Allier 15 Cantal 43 Haute-Loire 63 Puy-de-DÙme Basse-Normandie 14 Calvados 50 Manche 61 Orne Bourgogne (Burgundy) 21 CÙte-d’Or 58 NiËvre 71 SaÙne-et-Loire 89 Yonne Bretagne (Brittany) 22 CÙtes-d’Armor 29 FinistËre 35 Ille-et-Vilaine 56 Morbihan Centre (Val de Loire) 18 Cher 28 Eure-et-Loir 36 Indre 37 Indre-et-Loire 41 Loir-et-Cher 45 Loiret Champagne-Ardenne […]

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Causes of the French Revolution

<!–^~^440|right|Louis XVI^~^–>France in 1789 was one of the richest and most powerful nations in Europe. Only in Great Britain and the Netherlands did the common people have more freedom and less chance of arbitrary punishment. Nonetheless, a popular rebellion would first to bring the regime of King Louis XVI of France under control of a constitution, then to depose, imprison, try, and execute the king and, later, his wife Marie Antoinette. Many factors led to the revolution; to some extent […]

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Albigensian Crusade

The Albigensian Crusade (1209-1229) was part of the Roman Catholic Church’s efforts to crush the Cathars. The Cathars were especially numerous in southern France, in the region of Languedoc. They were termed Albigensians because of the movements presence in and around the city of Albi. Political control in Languedoc was split amongst many local lords and town councils, the area was relatively lightly oppressed and reasonably advanced. The crusading efforts can be divided into a number of periods, the first […]

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