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Bayeux Diary: A Gem Untouched in 1944

Bayeux Cathedral Exterior.JPGDespite its proximity to the D-Day beaches — Bayeux lies ten miles from Omaha and Gold — the city was untouched by the invasion. The Allies left it intact as it had little strategic value, and they needed a place in which to establish themselves on the Continent. France’s first liberated city has a lovely historic center, dominated by its Norman-Gothic cathedral: Notre-Dame de Bayeux. The original structure, built on a Roman holy site, was consecrated by William the Conqueror in 1077, a decade after he had won a battle at a place called Hastings. The Bayeux Tapestry was displayed in the Cathedral until the 18th century; it hangs today in the Musée de la Tapisserie de Bayeux.

Bayeux Cathedral.JPG

Addendum: Despite France’s lavish social welfare budgets, the number of beggars and panhandlers throughout the country is astonishing. The fellow at the entrance to the catherdral was present throughout our visit.


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