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Bellac (Municipality, Haute-Vienne, France)

Last modified: 2024-03-23 by ivan sache
Keywords: bellac | haute-vienne |
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Flag of Bellac - Image by Olivier Touzeau, 19 March 2022

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Presentation of Bellac

The municipality of Bellac (4,401 inhabitants in 2007; 2,442 ha) is located 50 km north of Limoges.

Bellac developed in the 10th century around a fortress built by Boso the Old, the first Count of Marche, on a rocky spur dominating river Vincou. The fortress controlled the trading roads between the Atlantic Ocean, Limousin, Poitou and Berry. The town was granted a charter in the 12th century by Count Adelbert III, which boosted its economic development; Bellac was renowned as early as in the 13th century for its taneries.
The church of Bellac keeps a reliquary dated c. 1130, maybe made for the chapel of the Counts of Marche in the castle of Bellac, and considered as the oldest known piece from the famous Limoges enamel workshop.

Bellac is the birth town of the diplomat and writer Jean Giraudoux (1882-1944), one of the most famous French playwrights of the interbellum. Giraudoux explicitely portrayed Bellac ("the most beautiful town in the world") in his novel Suzanne et le Pacifique (1921) and in his play L'Apollon de Bellac (written in 1942 for Louis Jouvet).

Ivan Sache, 6 June 2010

Flag of Bellac

The flag of Bellac (photo) is white with the municipal coat of arms, "Argent a castle or masoned and roofed sable ensigned by banners and weather vanes of the same a base wavy azure a chief azure three fleurs-de-lis or".
These arms are featured in the Armorial Général.

Ivan Sache, 2 April 2022