GLOBAL TREASURES: France (Avignon)


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- (Disc 1)
Global Treasures: Avignon
Ullman, Frank - Television Director

Catalogue Number: GTR-DVD-1128
UPC: 879061007279

Global Treasures - History's Most Protected Monuments - Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live today, and what we pass on to future generations. Our cultural and natural heritage are both irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration. Places as unique and diverse as the wilds of East Africa's Serengeti, the Pyramids of Egypt, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the Baroque cathedrals of Latin America make up our world's heritage. Join us as we explore one of these protected monuments.

A famous song that features a bridge takes us into the French Provencal town of Avignon. "Sur le pont d'Avignon" begins the world-famous French song that is familiar with both young and old alike. It is a song of dance on the Pont St. Benezet Bridge.

Internal disputes, in addition to power struggles in Rome, transformed Avignon into the new seat of the pontificate. The impressive Palais des Papes, "Pope's Palace," dominates the centre of the town. Its exterior resembles a military fortress rather than a religious residence.

A coat of arms above the main entrance is reminiscent of the papal court that was founded by Clement VI. In 1348, he bought Avignon for 80,000 florins from Johanna I, Queen of Sicily. During his term of office he added a new, more luxurious building to the Old Palace that had been constructed between 1334 and 1342. The beauty of the palace manifests itself in the numerous terraces and towers that were used for defensive purposes during the 14th and 15th centuries.

Seven successive French popes transformed Avignon into one of the most glamorous medieval courts in Europe. The town's expansion gradually became increasingly more splendid, and the pontificate's dependence on French royalty became further entrenched.

Part 1

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