LYONS

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LYONS, or, properly, LYON (Imgdunum) ; the second city of France, situated on the Rhone and Saone, 93 leagues S. E. of Paris, and 63 N. W. of Marseilles; archiepiscopal see; capital of the department of the Rhone; headquarters of a military division; and seat of numerous administrative and judicial authorities; lat. 45° 46' N.; Ion. 4° 49' E.; population, including the suburbs, in 1828, 185,723. Three bridges cross the Rhone, which is here about 650 feet wide, and often occasions great destruction by its inundations, as was the case particularly in 1812 and 1825. The Saone, which is 480 feet wide, is crossed by six bridges. The rivers are lined with wharves, some of which are adorned with handsome buildings, thronged with boats of various descriptions, and resound with the hum of numerous mills and watershops. The interior of the city presents the aspect of an old town, with narrow and dark streets, lined with houses seven or eight stories high, built solidly of stone. The pavements are pebbles, and there are no sidewalks. Some of the streets, in the more modern quarters of the city, are more spacious and handsome. There are 59 public squares, among which that of Louis le Grand, or Bellecour, one of the most magnificent in Europe, is adorned with beautiful limetrees, and an equestrian statue of Louis XIV. The monastic grounds and gardens have been mostly covered with buildings since the revolution. Among the principal buildings are the splendid hotel de ville, next to that of Amsterdam, the finest in Europe ; the palace of commerce and the arts, connected with which are lecturehalls, where various courses of lectures are delivered ; the vast prefecthouse, formerly a Dominican convent, with an extensive garden ; the principal hospital, or hotel Dieu; the Gothic cathedral of St. John, &c. There are also numerous hospitals and churches, a palais de justice, and an extensive prison. The tower of Pitrat, erected on an elevation to the north of the city, for an observatory, fell down in 1828, but has since been reconstructed. Many antiques have been found in the part of the city situated on the ancient Forum Trajani, and on the site of an imperial Roman palace. Medals, coins, vases, statues, lachrymatories, &c, with remains of aqueducts, of a theatre, and Roman baths, are among the relics of antiquity. On the hill of Fourvieres is a general cemetery, adorned with trees and handsome tombs, laid out in 1808. Lyons contains one of the finest libraries in France, consisting of 92,000 volumes. Among its scientific and useful institutions are a royal college, medical and theological schools; an academy of science, literature and the arts, agricultural, Linnaean, medical, law, Bible and other societies; a mont de ptiU, savingsbank, &c. The commerce and manufactures are extensive; the most important article is silk, the manufactures of which are celebrated for their firmness and beauty; silk and woollen, and silk and cotton stuffs, beautiful shawls, crape, silk hose, gold and silver lace, &c, are among the products of her industry. A large proportion of all the silk raised in France, and great quantities imported from Italy, are wrought up here. The silk raised in the vicinity is remarkable for its whiteness. In 1828, the number of establishments for the manufacture of silk was (within the walls) 7140, and that of the looms, 18,829. Printing and the book trade, paperhangings, the manufacture of glass, jewels, artificial flowers, hats, &c, give occupation to numerous hands. Lyons has an extensive transit trade of provisions for the southern cities, and of the oil and soap of Provence, and the wines of Languedoc, for the northern. Numerous and extensive warehouses and docks facilitate the great commercial operations of this queen of Eastern France. The Lyonnese are industrious, prudent, acute, intelligent and honest. The time of the foundation of Lyons is uncertain. Augustus made it the capital of Celtic Gaul, which received the name of Lugdunensis. In the reign of Nero, it was burned to the ground. In the fifth century, the Burgundians made it their capital. In the twelfth century, the sect of Waldenses was founded by Peter de Vaud, a merchant of Lyons. Italian fugitives, who came to seek refuge from the rage of parties in their country, in the thirteenth century, brought with them their arts and wealth. o Lyons suffered much during the religious wars of the sixteenth century, and was recovering from its losses when the revolution of the eighteenth again covered it with desolation. The citizens having risen against the terrorists, in their municipal government, and the Jacobin club (May 29, 1793), the convention sent an army of 60,000 men against the devoted city, which, after a brave resistance of 63 days, was taken. Collot d'Herbois and Couthon erected the guillotine, en permanence, and, dissatisfied with this slow method of execution, massacred the citizens, in crowds, with grapeshot. The fortifications, and many buildings, were demolished, the name of Lyons abolished, and that of VilleAffranchie substituted for it. In 1814, it was the theatre of several bloody actions between the French and the allies.