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In 843, by the Treaty of Verdun, Lyon went to the Holy Roman Emperor Lothair I. Lyon did not come under French control until the 14th century.
Fernand Braudel remarked, "Historians of Lyon are not sufficiently aware of the bi-polarity between Paris and Lyon, which is a constant structure in French development..the late Middle Ages to the Industrial Revolution".
These refugees had been expelled from Vienne and were now encamped at the confluence of the Saône and Rhône rivers.
The foundation was built on Fourvière hill and officially called Colonia Copia Felix Munatia, a name invoking prosperity and the blessing of the gods.
In 1572, Lyon was a scene of mass violence by Catholics against Protestant Huguenots in the St. Two centuries later, Lyon was again convulsed by violence when, during the French Revolution, the citizenry rose up against the National Convention and supported the Girondins.
Lyon played a significant role in the history of cinema: it is where Auguste and Louis Lumière invented the cinematograph.In 1862, the first of Lyon's extensive network of funicular railways began operation.During World War II, Lyon was a centre for the occupying Nazi forces, including Klaus Barbie, the infamous "Butcher of Lyon".Many buildings were destroyed, especially around the Place Bellecour, while Jean-Marie Collot d'Herbois and Joseph Fouché administered the execution of more than 2,000 people.The Convention ordered that its name be changed to "Liberated City" and a plaque was erected that proclaimed "Lyons made war on Liberty; Lyons no longer exists." A decade later, Napoleon ordered the reconstruction of all the buildings demolished during this period.
It is also known for its light festival, the Fête des Lumières, which begins every 8 December and lasts for four days, earning Lyon the title of Capital of Lights.