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Path: Photos > Museums > Bordeaux: Musée d'Aquitaine
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Bordeaux: Musée d'Aquitaine



We spent a pleasant afternoon in the Musée d'Aquitaine dedicated to the history of Bordeaux and the Aquitaine Region. Its exhibits are divided in seven sections ranging from Prehistory to today. We started on the ground floor with the Antiquity section presenting many artefacts from the time when Aquitaine was a Roman province: funerary stelae, columns from temples, remains from the antic wall, sculptures and even mosaic floors discovered in Bordeaux city centre. Next came the Medieval section dealing with the time between 848 when the town was sacked by the Normans to 1453 when it became French again after a long period of English occupation. A few rooms are dealing with the Renaissance, the master exhibit there being the recently restored cenotaph of the French philosopher Michel de Montaigne.

The first floor is dedicated to Bordeaux in the modern time starting with the 18th century. It is the century of the Enlightenment and the Revolution and also a time of great expansion for the city thanks to its transatlantic trade. Much space is given to the part Bordeaux played in the slave trade and its contribution to the city's wealth. Many documents and video installations are on display relating the living conditions and social relationships existing on the French plantations of the Caribbean, there is also a room dealing with the abolition of slavery and its consequences on both sides of the Ocean. The rest of the museum deals with the increasing wealth of Bordeaux and its urban development until today.

Antiquity section - Unfortunately I could not find any information on this piece, but it is beautiful nevertheless.
Antiquity section - Bordeaux was known as Burdigala in the Gallo-Roman period. A regional capital with river, sea and road connections, it thrived as a commercial centre and developed into an important city with many imposing monuments, such as an amphitheatre or the <a target="_blank"  href="https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Piliers_de_tutelle_(Bordeaux_1669).JPG">Temple des Piliers de Tutelle</a>, a massive construction demolished in 1677. This stele was found on the site of the temple and its inscription places the temple under the protection of Augustus. Antiquity section - Mosaic dating  from the 5th or 6th century found in a house in Bordeaux. The tesserae are made of terracotta, limestone and marmor. Antiquity section - Detail of a mosaic. Antiquity section - Funerary stele of Tatinia, discovered in Bordeaux in 1876. Antiquity section - Head of a young boy on a bas-relief. Antiquity section - Funerary stele of a young girl. She is shown frontal and standing with the animals she cherished in her lifetime. Note the cockerel picking on the tail of the little dog she is holding in her arms. Antiquity section - Statue of Jupiter found in Mézin, Gironde. 3rd quarter of the first century. Antiquity section - The god <a target="_blank"  href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cernunnos">Cernunnos</a>, a three-headed Celtic divinity with horns. The horns were probably inserted in the holes at the top of the head. Little is known about Cernunnos but he is said to embody the cycle of nature and his three heads might represent the past, present and future. Antiquity section - Detail of a statue of Diana, end of the 4th century - beginning of the 5th century. White marmor. Antiquity section - Detail of a bronze statue of Hercules dating from the end of the 2nd - beginning of the 3rd century. The face is believed to be the one of the Emperor Septimus Severus. Antiquity section - Statue of <a target="_blank"  href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cautes_and_Cautopates">Cautopates</a>, end of the 2nd - beginning of the 3rd century. Cautopates was a torch-bearer attending the god <a target="_blank"  href="https://www.britannica.com/topic/Mithraism">Mithras</a>. Antiquity section - Agricultural scene on a bas-relief. Antiquity section - Another stele. Medieval section - Bas-relief representing Christ's burial. Mid 15th century. Medieval section - Sculpture of Bordeaux' coat of arms in the times of the English occupation. Below is the belfry of Bordeaux (the Grosse Cloche) topped by the three leopards of England. End of 14th - beginning of 15th century. Medieval section - Capital of the 12th century representing an angel playing music. Medieval section - English medieval alabaster from the 14th century representing the Ascension. Medieval section - The <a target="_blank"  href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Binding_of_Isaac">sacrifice of Isaac</a>,  around 1220-1230, from the abbey of <a target="_blank"  href="http://www.abbaye-la-sauve-majeure.fr/en/Explore/History-of-the-monument">La Sauve-Majeure</a> in Gironde. God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac as a test of his faith but spared him the ordeal and substituted a ram at the last moment. The scene shows how an angel stops Abraham's sword and points to the ram. Medieval section - Rose taken from the ruins of the Grands Carmes monastery in Bordeaux. Second half of the 14th century. Medieval section - Altar from the old Saint André hospital in Bordeaux featuring a Virgin with Child, 15th century. Medieval section - Close-up of the Virgin with Child from the old Saint André hospital, 15th century. Cenotaph of <a target="_blank"  href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michel_de_Montaigne">Michel de Montaigne</a>. Montaigne (1533-1592) was a philosopher of the French Renaissance. His most famous work are <a target="_blank"  href="https://www.britannica.com/biography/Michel-de-Montaigne/The-Essays">the Essays</a>, a book where he questions the possibility of omniscience and sees the human being as a creature of weakness, inconstancy and uncertainty. Close-up of Michel de Montaigne. 18th century Bordeaux - This part of the museum is dedicated to Bordeaux' expansion and wealth as a successful trading port without denying the role it played in the slave trade. Portrait of the Princess Rakoczi with her “négrillon”. 18th century Bordeaux - Model of a ship involved in the transatlantic trade which contributed to Bordeaux' wealth. Modern period - Reconstruction of a typical grocery store in the 1930s. Modern period - Detail of the assortment of a typical grocery store in the 1930s. It shows many brands, some still going strong and others long disappeared but still dear to many French people. Modern period - Painting by Léo Drouyn from 1865 depicting works undertaken to clear the space around the cathedral Saint André by removing the cloister and the remains of the Gallo-Roman wall.

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$updated from: Museums.htxt Mon 03 May 2021 16:08:34 trvl2 (By Vero and Thomas Lauer)$