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mungoparko said:
This is history of another side of France. Robb’s view is that isolation and superstition pervaded the hinterlands of the "Octagon" until the first world war. The book opens with a royal surveyor being hunted down and killed by wary villagers- something you’d expect perhaps from the deepest Amazon but not in La France! Soldiers conscripted for Napoleon’s Grand Armee had trouble communicating due to all the different countryside dialects. My favorite bit is a peasant giving the statue of a saint a spanking to punish it for not answering prayers.
posted Sep 16, 2011 at 9:49AM
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