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L’Arbre d’Or est situé à l’entrée du Val sans Retour. Il a été implanté en ce lieu en 1991 suite à l’incendie qui a ravagé près de 500 hectares de la forêt en septembre 1990. Les crètes du Val sans Retour ont été particulièrement touchées. Cet incendie a énormément marqué les esprits des visiteurs mais aussi des habitants du secteur. L’association de sauvegarde du Val sans Retour a mis tous les moyens en oeuvre pour redonner une âme à cette zone sinistrée : reboisement et sensibilisation du public, mobilisation des acteurs locaux. Finalement, c’est l’installation de ce chataignier, doré à la feuille d’or qui matérialise leur action. Cet arbre, oeuvre de Francois Davin symbolise la fragilité de la forêt face au risque d’incendie, la renaissance de la nature ainsi que la bétise humaine qui est très souvent à l’origine des catastrophes naturelles.
L'Arbre d'Or is located at the entrance to the Valley of No Return. It has been established in this place in 1991 following a fire that destroyed nearly 500 hectares of forest in September 1990. The ridges of the Valley of No Return have been particularly affected. This fire has meant a lot to the minds of visitors but also local residents. The Association for the Protection of the Valley of No Return has all the means implemented to give a soul to the disaster area: afforestation and public awareness, mobilization of local actors. Finally, it is the installation of this chestnut, gilded with gold leaf materializing their action. This tree, work by Francois Davin symbolizes the fragility of the forest at risk of fire, the rebirth of nature and human stupidity, which is very often the cause of natural disasters.
France is affectionately referred to as "the Hexagon" for its overall shape.French history goes back to the Gauls, a Celtic tribe which inhabited the area circa 300BC until being conquered by Julius Caesar.The Franks were the first tribe to adopt Catholic Christianity after the Roman Empire collapsed. France became an independent location in the Treaty of Verdun in (843 AD), which divided up Charlemagne's Carolingian Empire into several portions.The French monarchy reached its zenith during the reign of Louis XIV, the Sun King, who stood for seventy-two years as the Monarch of all Monarchs. His palace of Versailles and its Hall of Mirrors are a splendid treasure-trove of Baroque art.The French Revolution ended the rule of the monarchy with the motto "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity!" On July 14th, 1789 angry mobs stormed La Bastille prison and began the Revolution in which Louis XVI, his wife Marie-Antoinette and thousands of others met the guillotine.One decade after the revolution, Napolean Bonaparte seized control of the Republic and named himself Emperor. His armies conquered most of Europe and his Napoleonic Code became a lasting legal foundation for concepts of personal status and property.During the period of colonization France controlled the largest empire in the world, second only to Britain.France is one of the founding members of the European Union and the United Nations, as well as one of the nuclear armed nations of the world.Text by Steve Smith.