Category Heritage

An Introductory Glimpse of Historical Corsica

Corse_type_de_vieilles_femmes WikimediaDistinguished by conquests and assaults throughout its history, Corsica bears its scars with pride – one look at the island’s history immediately demonstrates the ongoing and relentless attempts and successes for domination and acquisition, and this has largely contributed to maintaining the very soul of the people. With a length of 183 km by 83km, and surface size: 8 680km2, this island thrones with her summits achieving over 2700m, and is the third largest island in the western Mediterranean, situated relatively near to Italy (only 90km)...

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Introducing two prominent characters: Napoleon and Pascal Paoli

If we were to choose the two major representatives of Corsican history

Napoleon  Pascal-PaoliThe choice would undoubtedly lean towards Napoléon Bonaparte and Pascal Paoli. Both admiration and rivalry bore within the two parties. During his youth, Napoleon greatly admired his elder Paoli, who appeared quite indifferent and at times quite cold towards him. It would appear, a certain rivalry existed between the families, along with their divergency of ideas concerning Corsica. Finally exiled to St Helena, an island in the middle of the South Atlantic, Napoleon remained there until his death in 1821. With regards to Pascal Paoli, when the island was re-occupied by France he went into exile in Britain where he died in 1807...

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The Corsican language and its role today

panneau de signalisation corseAs I wrote earlier on, Corsica does possess its own language

Part of the ‘Romance’ languages, mainly spoken within families and villages and handed down throughout the centuries. Very close to dialects from central and southern Italy, musical and charming – it was finally recognised as a language in 1960. The noticeable variations, depending on where one is on the island, is also quite apparent. Traditionally oral, the development of the ‘written’ has gained considerable ground over time. In 2010, the Charter of the Corsican Language was signed, to increase the use and visibility in public stretch and social life, and through the ongoing efforts where schooling and courses are concerned, the desire to achieve bilingualism is the ultimate aim...

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A symbolic choice of flag

drapeaucorsePascal Paoli officialized the Corsican flag

Representing a black Moorish head on a white background, several hypotheses have been advanced as to the origin. Paoli would have stated: “The Corsicans want to see clear, freedom must walk the torch of philosophy, one might say that we fear the light”. It also appears that the Moor’s head was represented on the flag of Arrigo della Rocca, leader of Aragon in 14th century Corsica. To be noted also, during the Italian Renaissance, a Moor’s head was an emblem of Cagliari and Sardinia, and could have appeared on the emblem of the mercenaries, resulting in both Corsica and Sardinia possessing the same flag.

Appearing on maps and within documents throughout history, it could be confirmed that the beginning may well have gone as far back as the 1...

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