Showing posts with label Bern. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bern. Show all posts

City on the Language Divide: Fribourg

The city of Fribourg is located only 20 miles from Bern, but is today mainly French speaking though it started out as a German (or Alemannic) speaking city. It boasts the only Catholic University in Switzerland and has retained its medieval character throughout the city to this day. If you want to get a feeling for the lifestyle 600 years back, this is the place to visit.

Bern: Seat of The Swiss Federal Government

Bern (or Berne, or Berna) is usually referred to as the capital of Switzerland, which it isn't. The first mistake lies in calling the Confoederatio Helvetica Switzerland; Switzerland doesn't exist. And of the Helvetian Confederation, it is the seat of the Federal Government and as such is quite simply called Federal City and never capital. The Swiss constitution shuns the term capital. Bern's history goes back quite a long way before all that happened, and part of that history allows you to go shopping in town on a rainy day without getting wet.

Nonexistent Switzerland

La Suisse n’existe pas (French for Switzerland doesn't exist) was once used as the title for the Swiss exhibit at a World Exhibition. It set the Swiss media aflame with outraged indignation; despite that, it was nothing but a statement of fact: There is no country going by the name of Switzerland.