Monday, April 28, 2008

Where we're staying

We'll be staying in the 5ème arrondissement (fifth arrondissement) of Paris, also known as the Latin Quarter. I always thought this must have been where the Spanish and Portuguese ("Latin") neighborhoods were. It turns out the explanation is considerably more old-school. This section on the Left Bank contains the oldest universities in the world, like the University of Paris, "La Sorbonne," which got going in the twelfth century. Now THAT'S old-school. For centuries this neighborhood was populated by students living la vie Bohème. And speaking Latin; hence, Latin Quarter. Paris, of course, was the center of Catholic theology for many hundreds of years before Rome wrested the title away in the last couple of centuries. And the university, being a basically Catholic invention, has its origins here and in a few other European cities (Bologna, Padua, and Oxford). So in a way this is roots tourism for us.

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