Colmar กอลมาร์ คอลมาร์ โกลมาร์ โคลมาร์
Colmar ..Colmar Colmar .Colmar ..
Although archeological research has finished abundant evidence for Mens presence in the region since the Neolithic period, and the bronze and iron Ages have left behind some exceptional remains, Colamr does not make its appearance until much later. The important remains of the Gallo-Roman civilisation provide abundant evidence of the occupation of the countryside and of the side of Horbourg. In the 9th century Colmar, known at that time as Columbaria was just a vast estate, a residence used on several occasions by the Carolingian Kings.
It is between the 10th century and the beginning of the 13th century that one can situate the first important period of growth of what up to then was only a large village. Colmar was raised to the statues of a municipality, then came under the direct rule of the Emperor. This political development was accompanied by the first mention of the townsfolk, the new fortifications and the presence of the Imperial Eagle on the towns seal. In 1278 Rodolph of Hapsburg granted then town a municipal constitution, the areas of competence of the provost and the council were fixed, and the townsfolk came directly under the protection of the Empire. At the end of the Middle Ages the bourgeoisie confirmed its new power through its struggle within the Decapole, that well known association of the ten Imperial towns of Alsace, against ecclesiastical and aristocratic power, Colmar at this time also became a great artistic centre.
Many workshops were set up which are reputed to have developed easel painting as well as to have produced famous panel paintings of the late Gothic period. Like Renaissance Art the Protestant Reformation was late in coming to Colmar. After many vicissitudes the final outcome of the Thirty Years War saw the integration of Colmar into the possessions of the French monarchy. The arrival in 1698 of the Jesuits of Ensisheim, who installed themselves in St.PetersPriory, demonstrated the Royal wish to give the Catholic Church and important role. It was in the same year that the Sovereign Council of Alsace established itself in Colmar. It was composed of eminent jurists in whose company Voltaire, who was in Colmar during 1753-1754, found consolation for his misfortunes.
After the French revolution Colmar became integrated even further into the French administration. Naturally the urban development during the period of German annexation from 1870 to 1918 changed the appearance of some streets and squares but it must be stated that the contemporary development of Colmar has occurred without any sudden break with its past. The changes during the 19th century together with the ravages of two world wars fortunately have not deprived Colmar of its past and the town has retained this heritage while witnessing an unprecedented growth since 1945.
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