Bear and the city

egold

Rego Park (New York), United States

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Artist's Description

BEAR (noun)
1. any of the plantigrade, carnivorous or omnivorous mammals of the family Ursidae, having massive bodies, coarse heavy fur, relatively short limbs, and almost rudimentary tails.
2. a gruff, burly, clumsy, bad-mannered, or rude person.
3. a person who believes that market prices, esp. of stocks, will decline (opposed to bull ).
4. a player at cards who rarely bluffs.

Almost everybody saw bears in Zoo. Somebody even met them in real life…
A lot of different kinds of bears live on Earth: brown bear, American black bear, grizzly, polar bear, panda and many more… But not everyone knows that somewhere near the highest mountains in Europe is the city of bears, the place you can see bears everywhere… The name of this city is Bern, the capital of Switzerland.

Duke Berchtold V of Zähringen founded the city on the River Aare in 1191 and allegedly named it Bern after a bear (Bär in German) he had killed. It was made an Imperial Free City by the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II in 1218 after Berthold died without an heir. In 1353 Bern joined the young Swiss Confederation, becoming a leading member of the new state. It invaded and conquered Aargau in 1415 and Vaud in 1536, as well as other smaller territories, thereby becoming the largest city-state north of the Alps. It was occupied by French troops in 1798 during the French Revolutionary Wars, when it was stripped of most of its territories. In 1831 the city became the capital of the Canton of Bern and in 1848 it additionally became the Swiss capital.

The Bear is a symbol of this city and you can see his depictions or sculptures everywhere – on a walls, road and street signs, on Zytglogge (the oldest towerclock of 15-16 centuries) in it’s mechanical figures, on 11 historical fountains of 16 century. One of them Zähringerbrunnen (1535) has a bear in armour holding the standard of Berthold von Zähringer, Bern’s founder.
Since the 16th century, the city has had a bear pit (the Bärengraben), when you can see those bears alive.

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Artwork Comments

  • Jerri Johnson
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  • Sheila Laurens
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