History and key dates Normandy

History and key dates Normandy

The conquistadors of the bocage

It is said that Charlemagne wept when he saw the first longships ... Vikingsthey were laughing.

And they terrorized the Franks, who had fortified the Seine, but since the Vikings were invincible, they might as well give it to them and in turn defend it ... In the tenth century, Charles the Simple offers his daughter and Normandy to Hrolf Marche à Pied, says Rollon, leader of the Danish pirates. It was not smart: their descendants, kings of England, will harass the French for 8 centuries! Rollo, 1st Duke of Normandy, rebuilt the churches, while sacrificing some prisoners to Odin. Barely born, Normandy is in good hands!

In 1066, the duchy was the best organized of the Western States. Time to concretize its borders, Guillaume the Bastard eyeing England. The king there more or less chose him as his successor, but Hiccup the Saxon snatched the crown. Angry, Guillaume arrives with his drakkars. Exit Harold! Little Normandy swallows England.

The Norwegians have Ireland and Scotland. The Swedes are in Russia. In his spare time, all these beautiful people meet to besiege the city of Constantinople. 2 barons of Cotentin, the Hautevilles, couldn't stand it any longer: they left to carve out a kingdom for themselves in southern Italy. Having despoiled Puglia, they take Sicily from the Arabs. Simple appetizer before the 1st crusade where they will defeat the Turks, then become princes of Antioch and counts of Edessa.

Rollo's legacy

For 1 century, the Normans auscultate their roots. They make a very Viking sound. The founder of the noble Harcourt family was called Ansketil (in modern French: Anquetil). Houlgate means "sunken road", Dieppe "deep" and Beuf "shelter" or "hut". As for Honfleur, it would have a namesake in Iceland: Hornafjördhur, "the horn fjord" ...
Large sections of the Pays de Caux, the Seine valley, the Côte Fleurie and the North Cotentin can be read like a map of Norway. We recognize under Bolbec "the stream of the farm", in Caudebec "the cold stream". Trouville is the city of Thorolf ("the wolf of Thor"), Omonville, that of Asmund, Bierville and Besneville, those of Björn, and Rauville, that of Hrolf. In other words, from Rollo ... and Norwegian in the language of his country is still called today a "nordmann" (the man of the North)!

Distant Normandies

Since the first expeditions of the Icelandic Leiv l'Heureux to America, the Vikings have been on the move. Kiev, Caspian Sea, England, Sicily, Syria and Palestine ... Some did not want to see their Normandy again. In Saint-Barthélemy, a small island in the West Indies, for 3 centuries the Norman headdress protects from the tropical sun. Others, like the Mortagnais, have gone to merge into the Quebec melting pot. During the 1944 landings, the natives were surprised to hear them speak very pure French.

Some dates

- 56 BC AD: the Seine forms a border. To the north, the Belgians. To the south, the Gauls.
In 654: foundation of the Abbey of Jumièges by Philibert. It welcomes the sons of King Clovis II who let themselves drift by boat on the Seine.
- In 836: we're freezing in Scandinavia! Vikings who can afford it buy a boat to trade in the South. They discover that a contract is better concluded with a small blow of the ax ... A fortiori pick-pocketing. The whole of Europe is soon in their sights. Rouen, Jumièges and Saint-Wandrille taste.
- In 911: Already at home in Rouen, the Viking leader Rollon was offered by the King of the Franks the rest of Normandy ... No more border-Seine: the country discovered itself united.
- XNUMXth century: finished the wild team! The Thorvalds become Robert's. Normandy becomes a duchy. The abbeys are restored - thanks to the booty of the expeditions. In Rouen, Irish slaves are sold (the emirs of Spain are takers.
- Christmas 1066: William of Normandy conquers England. Which made him the main vassal of the King of France ... and now his equal as King of England.
- XNUMXth century: his father having fortified the borders, Duke Henri Plantagenêt married Aliénor d'Aquitaine, a well-endowed woman who owned Aquitaine. Normandy stretches from Scotland to the Pyrenees ... We are good for the Hundred Years War!
- 1183-1204: who goes on a crusade loses his place! Jean sans Terre ousted Richard the Lionheart. Philippe Auguste wants Upper Normandy? Jean sans Terre willingly gives it to him. But Richard returns, chases Jean and beats Philippe. With that, God removes Richard from the affection of his people, and gives Normandy to Philippe Auguste.
- In 1340: Philippe VI wants to conquer England. This is not a good idea: the Dieppe sailors have barely looted the entire French fleet is sent to the bottom. And now the English are coming! In Crécy, they cut a big suit for the French.
- XNUMXth century: Charles le Mauvais, count of Évreux, intrigues. To help him, the English take the Cotentin and advance to Verneuil. The king of France Jean le Bon reacts, but it is the disaster of Poitiers.
- In 1410: the English Henri V pulverizes the French at Azincourt and takes Normandy. But at the end of Armorica, irreducible French people resist: at Mont-Saint-Michel ...
- In 1431: Joan of Arc is burned alive in Rouen after a trial mounted by Bishop Cauchon.
- In 1450: Normandy forever French.
- In 1793: Charlotte Corday murders Marat. Gironde and Chouanne Normandy.
- In 1822: construction of a casino in Dieppe. 1st sea baths.
- In 1862: the Duc de Morny launched Deauville.
- In 1883: Monet moved to Giverny.
- In 1937: beginnings of the Moulinex adventure (inventor of the 1st electric coffee grinder) in Normandy, with the opening of a 1st company in Alençon.
- In 1942: unlucky allied landing at Dieppe.
- 6 1944 June: landing of the Allies in Normandy. 
- August 1944: the Germans are taken in the Falaise pocket. The Norman battle is (hard) won.
- In 1956: administrative separation of Upper and Lower Normandy.
- In 1959: the Tancarville bridge connects the two banks of the Seine estuary.
- In 1988: inauguration of the Caen Memorial.
- In 1995: inauguration of the Normandy bridge.
- In 1998: creation of the Perche natural park.
- In 2002: inauguration of the Cité de la mer in Cherbourg.
- 6 2004 June: celebrations of the 60th anniversary of the Normandy landings. German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder and his country are invited for the first time to celebrate this commemoration of the Allied victory over Nazi Germany.
- In 2005: inscription of the modern Havre, designed by the architect Auguste Perret, as a Unesco World Heritage Site.
- In 2014: 70th Anniversary of the D-Day In 2015: Mont-Saint-Michel becomes an island again! After 20 years of studies and exceptional works, 2015 marks the restoration of the maritime character of the Mount, embodied by the destruction of the old dike-road.
- In 2016: reunification of Upper and Lower Normandy into one and the same Normandy. 3rd edition of the Normandy Impressionist festival. La Manche welcomes the start of the Tour de France.
- In 2017: Le Havre is celebrating its 500th anniversary with pomp.
- In 2019: 75th anniversary of D-Day.
In 2021: the application of the D-Day Landing beaches for inscription on Unesco's World Heritage should be examined.

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