Field Trip to Cluny

Okay, I promise that my three posts talking about where I went for Toussaint will be coming soon, but for now, I wanted to give you all a little update on where my Histoire d’Art class went for the weekend on our field trip. Unfortunately for us, it was raining almost all day (except for the very end) and we had to wake up at 9am in order to get there BUT besides that, it was a great day!

We went to Cluny, a small town in France that is about an hour north of Lyon (close to Dijon), in order to see an excavation sight where people before the Middle Ages dug out stone from the walls (in order to make tombs and the buildings that we were about to see) which was deep in a forrest, so we had to walk through mud, hold our umbrellas while also trying to take notes. However, we were able to see all of the places where pieces of the wall had been hollowed out many, many years ago and then got to go into a small (TERRIFYING) crevice in the ground to see more of the hollowed at walls.

After that, we went to l’Abbaye de Cluny, which was built in 1910 and eventually became the home to the largest monastic order in the Western world! At one time, in the 12th century, there were more than 250 monks who lived there, which is really crazy because there are usually only 20 – 50 monks in one monastery. However, during the Religious Wars in the 16th century, much of the monastery was destroyed (much like everything in France, I’ve noticed) and wasn’t started to be restored until the 18th century. But, since this story gets even sadder, the dissolution of the monastic orders led to the dispersion of the monks in 1791, and in 1798, the state decided to start dismantling the church. It wasn’t until 1821 that the preservation of the abbey’s ruins and wasn’t listed as a historic monument until 1862. Because of this, most of the church is a renovation BUT it is built to look exactly the same. But since France doesn’t put THAT much money into repairing old abbeys, they have not even rebuilt 25% of the abbey because it was so huge. There is a picture below of what the abbey looks like right now:

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We also got a little bit of time to walk around Cluny, and see their Saturday market (oh yeah, did I not mention that this was all on a SATURDAY) and got to see some authentic Chinese food which made me wish I had brought my money with me because it smelled so good (here’s lookin’ at you Irvine). Cluny is a super authentic, small, French countryside town, and since it is almost fall, all of trees were changing colors and everything was beautiful! I made my friend take a picture of me in front of one of the houses there with vines all up on it:

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After we finished up with walking around the town for a little bit, and seeing l’Abbaye de Cluny, we took a drive to the Château de Cormatin. This is a house from…a long time ago? The house was built as a symbol of the Family, and was NOT a vacation home (as our tour guide said every 15 seconds). The family who lived there back in the day lived for 250 years, and they were French nobility and rich beyond belief, which can be seen in how huge the house is. Don’t believe me? Well, take a lookie here…

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At this point, our shoes were soaked from tromping around in the rain, and we were all freezing from the lack of central heating within the château, that even though the house was really cool, we were all ready to go home. But, before we got back onto the bus, we were able to watch the sunset over this beautiful house and gave us all the opportunity to take some pretty sick pics. For example:

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Anyway, that was my short little update on our field trip this weekend! Besides that, we have all just still be recuperating from Toussaint and working on our various presentations and papers that we have due (seemingly every other day). Ill hit you all with a much, much more in depth of each place I went for Toussaint once I gain access to a computer and can upload all of my pictures! Until then y’all~~

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