Vidal de la Blache, Paul

Vidal de la Blache, Paul

Vidal de la Blache, Paul, French geographer, 1845-1918, the father of French human geography. He was educated at the École Normale Supérieure, Paris, and had an avid interest in history and geography. He taught geography in Nancy and Paris and was a member (1898-1905) of the Faculté des Lettres, Paris, holding the geography chair. Vidal believed that there was an interrelationship between the natural environment and man's activities. He was the founder (1891) and editor of Annales de géographie. Among his works are États et nations de l'Europe (1889), Tableau de la géographie de la France (1903), and the posthumous Principes de géographie humaine (1923; tr. Principles of Human Geography, 1926) and Géographie universelle (15 vol., 1927-48, completed by Lucien Gallois).

Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer (lit. "Saint Marys of the Sea", Provençal Occitan Lei Santei Marias de la Mar) is the capital of the Camargue (Provençal Occitan Camarga) in the south of France. It is a commune in the Bouches-du-Rhône department by the Mediterranean Sea. Population: 2,478 (50,000+ during the summer holidays). It has the second-largest area of all communes in Metropolitan France, smaller only than that of neighboring Arles.


The three saints Mary Magdalene, Mary Salome and Mary Jacobe, whose relics are the focus of the devotions of pilgrims are believed to be the women who were the first witnesses to the empty tomb at the resurrection of Jesus. After the Crucifixion of Jesus, Mary Salome, Mary Jacobe, and Mary Magdalene set sail from Alexandria, Egypt with their uncle Joseph of Aramithia, by French legend OR were cast adrift in a boat that arrived off the coast of what is now France "a sort of fortress named Oppidum-Râ", and the location was known as Notre-Dame-de-Ratis ( becoming Ratis, or boat) (Droit, 1961, 19); the name being changed to Notre-Dame-de-la-Mer, and then Les Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer in 1838.

It is a pilgrimage destination for Roma (Gypsies) who gather yearly in the town for a religious festival in honor of Saint Sarah known by the French to be Mary Magdala's daughter OR may also be known as Sara-la-Kali (Sara the black). Dark-skinned Saint Sara is said to have possibly been the Egyptian servant of the three Marys. The famous flamenco guitarist Manitas de Plata first played there.


See also

External links


  • Droit, Michel. (1963). Carmague. Ernest and Adair Heimann (trans.). London: George Allen and Unwin

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