Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Mon voyage. Jour numéro vingt-cinq. Toulouse.

Today I arrived in Toulouse.  The only reason I came here was because there were Easy Jet flights to Rome and it is just a train ride away from Bordeaux.  Surprisingly (based on the fact I had no draw to the city, it is not a big tourist destination, and it is the fourth largest city in France) I really enjoyed my time here.  
Toulouse, like so many cities in Europe, has an encyclopedia's worth of history.  
It was a Roman military outpost in the second century BC, a Visigothic Kingdom in the 5th century, and all of the pages before and after... 

Toulouse is known as La Ville Rose, because of the pink terracotta bricks used in many of the buildings.  It very much defines the city.
The Basilica of Saint Sernin (12th century) is the largest Romanesque church in Europe.

Someone should have told the architect of la Eglise Notre-Dame du Taur (14th century) less is more. 

Le Capitole was built in 1190 to show off Toulouse's wealth.  

Ever since 1664 it has hosted the Salle of Illustres, featuring the work of Henri Martin and Paul Gervais. 

Le Couvent des Jacobins is best known for its palm tree columns, which are way more magnificent in person.  

The church is also famous for its stained glass, designed in 1955 by Max Ingrand, an artist known for his work with glass.

Monks are pranksters, drawing inappropriate images on grave markers.
Monks who wished to remain here for all eternity were buried in the cloister, at their own risk...

I ended my day in Toulouse in front of Pont Neuf (New Bridge).  Built in the 1600's it is evidence that names should not contain the word 'new' if they is intended to last.  They are currently constructing Pont Neuf Neuf (the New New Bridge).  I made that up but it doesn't sound too far off.

1 comment:

  1. I, too, have never been to Toulouse but now I want to go, especially since I love Easy jet. Great buildings and history. You did a great job of going beyond your expectations. I have found that all cities hold treasures. It is up to the traveler to discover them (ohh, good quote by Denise)


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