Tuesday, 18 January 2011

The French house untouched for 100 years

The French house untouched for 100 years

This has got to be one of my favourite items of news for a long time! Shades of the 70-year-old Parisian flat I blogged about previously, methinks. What is it with the French and leaving things alone for decades on end? If this had been in Britain the place would have probably been knocked down by now(!). What a fantastic story, and what a fellow Monsieur Mantin must have been to build a huge house, fill it with such a vast collection of ephemera and then insist it be left as a museum so people today could have some idea of his lifestyle? It's the ultimate time capsule!

I get the impression from the article that he is considered something of a morbid eccentric but then as it also says what better way to ensure his immortality? I wish I could do the same, but I doubt my poky little flat and its contents would be of any interest to 22nd Century scholars (or even still standing 100 years from now)! The terms "aesthete" and "gentleman of leisure" are certainly well-deserved though; one could easily add "philanthropist" considering what his legacy has turned out to be and the esteem in which he is held by the townspeople today. It must be a fascinating place to visit - I almost want to hop on a ferry now and cross the Channel to have a look! Certainly a must-see if one is ever in the area.

And to think that a simple misunderstanding went towards making it how it is today, in that M. Mantin only wanted it to be a museum in 100 years time, not that it should be locked up for 100 years. His great niece should also be commended for seeing the cultural and historical importance of the place and ensuring that it was opened in accordance with Mantin's wishes, despite [typical] paper-pushing from the local government. All in all, an incredible memorial to one man's interests and life 100 years ago, and an amazing saga.

6 comments:

  1. You find all the best news stories! What a house! :)

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  2. WOW. I do recall something similar happening in a small house in the North of England- more by accident than anything else, the brothers that lived there simply didn't change anything from childhood! I heard it had been preserved but cannot remember the name!!

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  3. What a wonderful find,I am certain that it is an amazing place to visit, three cheers for him being eccentric and leaving us the people this amazing time capsule.
    It has gone on to my list of places to visit.

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  4. Wow, it would be amazing to wander around.

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  5. Oh, man! How cool! I read about the Parisian apartment, these little pockets of time capsule properties keep popping up! Thanks for sharing.

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  6. hey there i gave you a stylish blogger award :D

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