Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist
poliphilo

Annecy

So where was I?

Ah yes, Annecy.

Annecy is massive. By which I mean the architecture is massive- lowering house fronts with buttresses and cavernous arcades. I'm guessing the old town is mostly- or at least basically- medieval. Has the massiveness something to do with living among mountains? I think so. I am reminded that Le Corbusier-  modern master of the massive- who found a kind of world-denying spirituality in the massive and brutal- was from this part of the world.

The town's most famous former citizen is St. Francois de Sales- who was bishop here in the early seventeenth century- and on the frontine of the war between Rome and John Calvin's Geneva. All I know about him is what I've read in Wikipedia, but he seems to have been charming, witty and humane. The Counter-Reformation is not my favourite intellectual and cultural movement, but if I'd been around at the time and forced to choose between Calvin's Geneva and de Sales' Annecy I don't think I'd have had much difficulty choosing de Sales. He is, on the strength of having written a number of stylish devotional works, the Vatican-designated patron of writers and journalists.

There's a campaign to get Annecy and its lake declared a World Heritage Site. Right on! I say. Also they'd like to host the 2018 Winter Olympics.
 


This is a famous view. The bridge at the end of the vista is called "the bridge of love".



This is a detail of the facade of the late 17th century Hotel de Sales which- according to a wall plaque- was where the Sardinian court (and no, I've no idea what they were doing here) used to hang out.
 


A typical square with a typical fountain.



Just dig how massive it all is.



A corner tower of the castle.

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