Little histories about Dun-sur-Auron belfry

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Dun-sur-Auron belfry Belfry Execution Crusades French Revolution Mystery

For Dun’s defense!

This 6-floors belfry from the 13th century, with its 1490 framework, is pretty amazing! It almost looks like a medieval keep, isn’t it? Also known as ″Clock tower″, it was part of the city’s second rampart.

They put the public clock, inside, in the 15th century, then, the 3d rampart was raised: the tower was included in the heart of the city. By a little lateral door located on one side of the belfry, they could reach the city’s ramparts: those one (about 12 m. high) were protected by a 20 metres moat.

At the top of the tower, they had a nice panoramic view on all the valley, where used to be the famous Gallo-Roman road linking Bourges to Lyon. Hey, Dun used to be a very important town, with its big castle of Dun-le-Roi, former name of Dun-sur-Auron...

A crusader from Berry

Eudes Arpin, lord of Dun

The tower itself has a stony part (17 m. high), crowned by a wooden part (about 20 m. high). Add to this the spire (5 m.)… so our tower is about 42 metres high! Whoa… On the first floor, we discover the ″Treasure’s room″.

They used to keep here the city’s archives. In this room, we learn more about Dun’s story and especially about Eudes Arpin, a famous crusader celebrated by troubadours for his bravery!

Eudes was Humbaud’s son, lord of Dun. He married Mahaut, daughter of Gilon, lord of Sully and of La Chapelle-d’Angillon, in 1092. So with this marriage, he became viscount of Bourges. But Eudes was a warrior, the last viscount of Bourges and the lord of Dun. A brave knight who wanted to wage war!

Crusade time!

We were in 1100: Eudes couldn’t resist. The war called him! So he sold his land near Bourges to the king Philippe I, in order to go to the Holy Land. Hey, yes, to go on Crusades was an expensive thing! One year later, he went there with his men and was taken prisoner in Rama in 1102.

But Alexis, emperor of Constantinople, spared his life. Released, Eudes came back in France and withdrew in the monastery of La Charité-sur-Loire (Burgundy), in 1107, where he became the new prior. He died in 1130…

At the bottom of the belfry

Flu in the street!

At the bottom of the belfry, you'll notice this inscription: Ici se donne le gris. Mystery! What’s this? The place where they sold grey (gris). Salt? it was a windy place, where people caught the flu (gris = grippe, ″flu″)? We don’t know exactly!

Getting mad!

You know what? A man named Edme Laperche, wine-producer in 1794, was guillotined at the bottom of the belfry, because of his ″revolutionary acts″…

And also!