La Belle Époque bought to life in photographs

Written by on February 14, 2013 in My French Life

Belle Epoque France

La Belle Époque in Paris has been curiously bought to life by photographs which have been unearthed and shared on the internet.

The Belle Époque– in English “the Beautiful Era” – was a period in French history that is conventionally dated as starting in 1871 and ending when World War I began in 1914. A time of peace and prosperity in Europe and when the arts flourished – particularly in Paris. Compared to the horror of War that followed, the memory of the time before became a symbol of a golden age in contrast, though the name Belle Époque was applied much later.

Belle Epoque France

Images of Paris taken in the early 1900s have caught the imagination of all who see them thanks to being in colour as the majority of photographs from the early 20th century are in black and white.

The fact that we are all so used to seeing those early photographs in their neutral tones simply adds to the wow factor of the coloured pictures despite rumours that many have been “doctored” to be more colourful than they should be.

Belle Epoque France

The photographs, often of every day life, would be beautiful and evocative without the addition of colour but with the faded hues they are simply stunning and seem to be able to inspire in those who see them a deeper understanding of the look and feel of the Belle Époque in Paris.

Belle Epoque France

Thanks to Paris 1914 for sharing these lovely images.

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