The catacombs are underground excavations where the old ones placed in tombs the bodies which they did not burn. The majority of these catacombs were at the origin only of old abandoned careers. The word catacombs comes from ecclesiastical Latin catacumbæ , by métathèse and attraction of - cumbere ( to rest ), of the expression cata tumbas ( among the tombs ), of the Greek κατα ( in bottom ) and τυμβος ( falls ) (1).
Most famous are those of Rome, mainly those of Saint-Sebastien; those of Naples, which, initially employed with the burial of pagan, the 4th century was only reserved to the Christians (one built there a great number of churches and vaults); those of Syracuse, famous the Latomies of Denys the Tyrant; those of Catane, Agrigente and Pagan. Often the catacombs were used as refuge to the Christians of the first centuries: in times of persecution, they met there to celebrate in secrecy the mysteries of their religion.
Catacombs of Rome
See also: Catacombs of Rome
Catacombs of Paris
See also: Catacombs of Paris
By extension, it is also the name which one gave to the part of the underground careers of Paris in which the bones of million people were stored when one decided to empty the Parisian cemeteries starting from 1786, as well as the remainders that the churches contained, and one made some of immense ossuaries. The catacombs of Paris are part of the old careers extending under most of the town of Paris. The name of catacombs, in the case of the town of Paris, is abusive. It is actually about an ossuary, the bones having been moved since of the cemeteries.
The careers of Paris are composed today, of a network of galleries of inspections whose access is strictly interdict since 1955, and of the municipal ossuary located 1 avenue du colonel Rol-Tanguy, where the remainders of 6 million Parisian are stored.
As tallies of fictions literary and cinematographicTo the cinema several films were made in the “catacombs”: Cartridge (with Jean-Paul Belmondo), but especially Gaspards with inter alia actors Chantal Goya.
To visit the catacombs of Paris
- the catacombs can be visited during the day. A part is opened with the public, and maintained well. The course is done during a time in the middle of the bones of which some are laid out in reasons of heart or cross. Moreover, one will find throughout the way of the poems and other epitaphs treating of death.
- Of many people also visits the remainder of the network of underground careers. This remains nevertheless an infringement which an police officer can sanction of a fine. One calls these explorers of under Parisian grounds the “Cataphile S”, and many neologisms are formed on this basis (cataguide, etc). It is of course very dangerous to venture in this maze of galleries without being accompanied by somebody knowing the places: the network extending on approximately 250 km, it is easy to be lost.
Catacombs of Lyon
There would exist also catacombs in Lyon but they are closed with the public because of the high risks of crumbling. They extend from Fourvière until the Cross-Russet-red and in the Lyon old man. The rare privileged ones succeeded in seeing them. The localization of the various entries of the Lyons catacombs is not revealed owing to the fact that these catacombs are not opened with the public. At Cross-Russet-red, the entries of the catacombs are located mainly in deep cellars; those which were discovered, were condemned. To Fourvière, the known entries all are condemned (even if it is probable that certain remain accessible).
In the Old Lyon, the entries are in the cellars and the sewers (she all either are condemned, or supervised). No outstanding discovery was carried out there. The rumors on treasures dissimulated by the resistant ones during the Second world war are thus, so far, without base.
The Lyons galleries are generally galleries of drainage dug during the times either to collect, or to evacuate water in order to avoid any collapse of the hills the such catastrophe of 1930 when a side of the hill of Fourvière crumbled.
Military galleries were built at the same time as the belt of forts around Lyon. Finally certain galleries keep their mystery as for their function, the such " Stop of Poisson" , which bears this name because of their form making think of a fish skeleton.
Like Paris these " catacombes" bear only the name from there, not being neither of the ossuaries nor of the crypts.
On the other hand " réseaux" Lyoneses are multiple various sizes, rock, time and even if some communicate between them, the latter are relatively scattered between the two Lyonnaises hills.
References and sources
- “Chambers Dictionary off Etymology”, Chambers (New York), 1988, ISBN 0-550-14230-4, articles catacomb and tomb
- minimal Encyclopedia of the catacombs
Christian catacombs of Rome (French)
- Photographs and information on the catacombs of Paris
- Photographs of the catacombs and careers of Paris and Île-de-France, classified by places
- Directory of bonds on underground exploration
- Photographs and files on the catacombs
- To visit the catacombs of Rome
- a small shiver within the catacombs?
- artistic Photographs of careers/mines and urban exploration in general
- “Police in basement”
- Photographs and visit report in the catacombs and underground careers
- catacombs of Lyon
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