Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Vercingetorix and the Battle of Alesia

On our arrival in Dijon, we parked our car in Rue Vercingetorix. I thought, what a strange name but I'd seen many strange street names in our travels. What I was to realise was that this name took its origin from a great Gaul Warrior that came to a fateful demise at the hands of Julius Caesar in 52bc.
We had it mind to visit the ancient Roman site on Mont Auxois, above the village of Alise Set Reine.
Little did we know of its history at the time.

The memorial statue of Vercingetorix at the highest point  on the plateau of Alesia.

This painting depicts the surrender of Vercingetorix, sacrificing himself to Caesar to save his people from complete eradication.

On arrival of the village below, we climbed the narrow lane ways to the highest point that levelled out to a plateau. At one end at the highest point stood a majestic bronze statue of the chief of the united tribes of the Gauls. In a six week siege, Caesar eventually defeated Vercingetorix and his troops. The Gaul Chieftain was taken back to Rome where he was imprisoned for several years before being executed.

The green highlighted point is where we wandered over the excavations of Alesia and the site of Vercingetorix battle  with  Caesar in 52bc - Its a strange feeling being there and imagining the bloody battle that took place over six weeks.

It was only in the mid 19th century that the site was excavated. It takes on quite a large area and to wander the paths and take in the ruins sets the mind wandering about the scenes from an ancient and barbaric era. I wonder if much has changed with today's wars!


  1. Interesting post. I wonder how much more they have dug out since you saw the site. The Roman excavations at the sites here just seem to grow on a daily basis. There are always many students working under supervision. Thanks for sharing this trip. Have a great Easter. Diane

    1. We've seen quite a few sites of Roman ruins now, small/large and all vering interesting because of the antiquity. I wonder how much is still undiscovered?
      You also have a great and safe Easter. France is only 4 weeks away. Whoopy-doo

  2. 52 BC now that's a long time ago ... Amazing to think that you were standing on the battle ground.
    Only four weeks till you leave ... You must both be very excited ... Pack light and take half out .... Sounds good advice but I never heeded it ... Always packed too much stuff !!

  3. Dianne - its not what you take - its what you bring home. Not long before Wednesdays in France becomes evryday in france.
    Looking forward to you joining us in spirit.

  4. Leon, I think you meant Vercingetorix. I have been through Dijon many times
    but never stopped. I know it is a pretty city and didn't know the Romans left
    such an "impression".

  5. I did mean "what you said" and thanks - I will change. Spell check didn't know either.
    Did you watch the TV series ROME in the first series where Vercingetorix was brought back to Rome.


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