week-end à Auch, Gers, Gascogne…:-)

motto:”La vie est un chapelet de petites misères que le philosophe égrène en riant. Je ne tiens pas assez à la vie pour craindre la mort. Derrière tout bonheur présent est cachée une crainte à venir…”(D’Artagnan via Alexandre Dumas – Les 3 Mousquetaires)

balade culturelle à Auch sur les pas de D’Artagnan, entre “pousterles” et un “abri impossible”… 🙂 voici un petit aperçu d’Auch, sa cathédrale Sainte-Marie et son escalier monumental, construit au milieu du 19e siècle et restauré depuis 2008. Ses 234 marches (370 avec les doubles volées!) relient la haute et la basse ville. La statue de D’Artagnan s’y impose: réalisée par Firmin Michelet en 1931, elle domine fièrement le Gers depuis piédestal. Il y est représenté debout, en habit de mousquetaire, le poing sur la hanche. De son vrai nom Charles de Batz-Castelmore, comte d’Artagnan – le plus connu des Mousquetaires est né entre 1611 et 1615(?) au château de Castelmore, près de Lupiac, en Gascogne, un village situé à une quarantaine de kms d’Auch.

Lorsqu’il a quitté sa province pour Paris vers 1630, il a décidé d’emprunter le nom de sa mère, Françoise de Montesquiou d’Artagnan. Il s’est engagé chez les “Cadets des Gardes-françaises”, puis il a rejoint les Mousquetaires. Louis-XIV lui accorde toute sa confiance, et D’Artagnan devient capitaine-lieutenant de la compagnie des Mousquetaires. Il est mort en 1673 lors du siège de Maastricht, mais le lieu de sa sépulture est resté un mystère. Alexandre Dumas a découvert la vie de d’Artagnan à travers des mémoires, il s’est enthousiasmé pour le personnage et s’en est inspiré pour la rédaction de sa célèbre trilogie “Les Trois Mousquetaires” dont la devise était:”un pour tous et tous pour un!” – du latin:”unus pro omnibus, omnes pro uno!” – qui est, aussi, la devise traditionnelle (mais non-officielle!) de la Suisse… 🙂

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motto:”Life is a chaplet of little miseries that a philosopher recites while laughing. I do not care enough for life to fear death. An apprehension of the future is hidden behind any current happiness…”(D’Artagnan via Alexandre Dumas – The 3 Musketeers)

cultural stroll in Auch, Gers, Gascony – along D’Artagnan’s footsteps, between extremely narrow lanes and an “impossible shelter”… 🙂 here’s a foretaste of Auch, its Sainte-Marie cathedral and its monumental stairway, built in the mid 19th century and restored since 2008. Its 234 steps (370 with the double “flights”!) link the upper and lower town. D’Artagnan’s statue imposes itself – here is the most famous Gascon, Captain of the King’s Musketeers. Sculpted by Firmin Michelet in 1931, it proudly overviews the Gers river from its pedestal. He stands up there, wearing his musketeer uniform and his fist on his hip. His real name was Charles de Batz-Castelmore, Count d’Artagnan – the most famous of the Musketeers was born between 1611 and 1615(?) at the castle Castelmore near Lupiac, in Gascony – about 40kms from Auch.

When he left his hometown for Paris, around 1630, he decided to bear his mother’s maiden name – Françoise de Montesquiou d’Artagnan. He was enrolled in the “Cadets des Gardes-françaises”, then he joined the Musketeers. Louis XIV granted him full confidence, and D’Artagnan became captain-lieutenant of the company of the Musketeers. He died in 1673 during the siege of Maastricht, but the place of his tomb has remained  a mystery. Alexandre Dumas discovered D’Artagnan’s life across some memories, he was excited about this character that inspired him to write his well-known trilogy “The Three Musketeers” whose motto was:”one for all and all for one!” – from Latin:”unus pro omnibus, omnes pro uno!” – which is also Switzerland’s traditional, but non-official motto… 🙂   
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Have a cheerful Sunday, folks! 🙂

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About Mél@nie

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Posted on 31 May 2015, in melanie. Bookmark the permalink. 40 Comments.

  1. ps great images – I love the old, old street house – so medieval!

  2. thank you for reminding me of this great story and the historic time – I loved the Three Musketeers!

  3. Que de choses historiques intéressantes Mél@nie, je ne savais pas tout ça, alors que j’ai arpenté Auch de nombreuses fois. Bonne journée!

  4. Very interesting — I’m embarrassed at how much I don’t know, or thought I knew but apparently had no idea. 😉

    • thanx-todah, but you don’t have to be “embarrssed”, ED, ’cause we all have gaps(voids) here and there… 😉 I’m such a dilettante générale and I fully assume it! 🙂

  5. very cool slideshow Melanie – (and bonjour) – thanx for the history tidbits – did not know that about Switzerland’s motto – ”unus pro omnibus, omnes pro uno!” 🙂

  6. Merci, Melanie! I always thought D’Artagnan was just a fictional character! What a charming town!

    • 🙂 avec joie, Noëlle! we say in French: on apprend quelque-chose tous les jours = we learn something (new or unknown!) each day… 🙂 yes, Auch is a small charming town.

  7. There is no better sepulture than to be eternal in the imagination of millions of readers/dreamers, with el Zorro he’s my favorite swordsman. Happy Sunday as well Mélanie, duchess of la ville rose and captain of King’s playground 😉

    • you’re right and I totally agree with your common-sense comment, FR… 🙂 oh, I’m just Mélanie, noble titles have never been my cups of coffee or green tea, I’m only “the master of my fate and the captain of my soul…” 😉

  8. An interesting weekend, steeped in history and literature! Wonderful and exciting I’m sure, Melanie… have a great week, mon amie 🙂

  9. Smashing post. I love “Old Europe”!

    • merci, Ark and come over again: your roots & origins are (still!) here… 🙂

      • Maybe I shall retire in Portugal one day? My wife is from just outside Porto. Oh, and I have visited Carcassone when I was a teenager. I remember it to be a beautiful city.

        • yeah, why not?!… Portugal would be an excellent choice and wise decision: lots of French who used to retire or to spend 9 months/year in Morocco or Tunisia, have chosen Portugal these past 5 years… it’s a safe country, in the euro-zone, fine weather, hospitable folks, cheaper than Spain, delicious food and good wines, so: cheers with a glass of Porto wine, of course! 🙂 last but not least: you’ll have your personal interpreter-translator… 😉
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          Carcassonne is still the same interesting and pleasant spot… 🙂

  10. merci for bringing me closer to the one for all & all for one 🙂

  11. What fun to visit the real D’Artagnan. But I rather like life even with its chapters of little miseries. 😉

  12. De très belles images, Mélanie et une histoire très intéressante, il faut absolument qu’on prévoit une visite à Auch!

  13. Those pics bring The Three Musketeers story to life.

    • glad to hear this, Ian, as I love French literature, history and geography… 🙂

      • Makes me think of The Man in The Iron Mask story.

        • yes, of course, Ian… after Voltaire, Alexandre Dumas did elaborate about him: the prisoner is forced to wear an iron mask ’cause he’s Louis XIV’s identical twin… according to other sources, he was Louis de Bourbon, comte de Vermandois, an illegitimate son of Louis XIV, but the mystery has never been solved!

  14. That is so beautiful.

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