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Exploring the Past in Lorraine

Strategically located in north-east France, and sharing borders with Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany, Lorraine is often said to be at the crossroads of Europe. This explains its very rich and colourful, often turbulent, history – from the Roman heritage in the city of Metz to the Renaissance charm of Nancy. The departments in Lorraine are: Meurthe-et-Moselle, Meuse, Moselle and Vosges.

Map of Archaeology and History Sites and Museums in Lorraine

Prehistoric sites (Palaeolithic, Mesolithic, Neolithic, Bronze Age and Iron Age) are marked with red pins on the map, Gallo-Roman with green pins, Middle Ages with light blue, Early Modern (the Ancien Régime) with pink, Modern (from the French Revolution to the Great War) with purple, 20th Century/Historic with yellow. Museums and theme parks are marked with dark blue pins.
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Archaeology & History Sites in Lorraine

European Archaeological Park of Bliesbruck-Reinheim

A view of the Celtic Princess's grave mound.As there is a concentration of Iron Age and Roman sites located on the French-German border, this archaeological park is a joint venture between the respective authorities in France and Germany. The park is set up well for a great day out. On view are excavations and reconstructions of Iron Age and Roman villages, an Iron Age tomb and a Roman villa. Photograph © Anna16

Châtel Medieval Fortress

Remains of the Medieval fortress at sunset.During Roman times Châtel-sur-Moselle was situated at the junction of three major roads. Built towards the end of the 11th century for the Duke of Lorraine, the Medieval fortress here – one of the biggest castle forts in Europe – covers over five hectares, it has 22 towers, ramparts that run for over a kilometre, and there are three floors as well as a network of subterranean galleries and tunnels. [Website]


Museums in Lorraine

Lorraine Museum

Statues in the courtyard of the Ducal Palace of Nancy . The Musée Lorrain offers an extensive history of eastern France, from prehistory to the twentieth century, set in the buildings of a 16th century Ducal Palace in the heart of the Old Town of Nancy. The archaeological galleries are somewhat typical in that they deal, chronologically, with the usual themes such as everyday objects, ornaments, weapons, as well as religious and funerary sculpture. Photograph © dalbera

Metz Museum of History and Archaeology

Basement galleries with religious Medieval statuaryMusées de Metz Métropole La Cour d’Or is the full name given to a series of collections that encompass the heritage of the greater Metz area from Antiquity to the Renaissance. The archaeology exhibits have extensive Roman and Medieval displays, with a range of objects that demonstrate daily life during these times, as well as religious themes. [Website]

Sarrebourg Museum

In a very modern, state-of-the-art building, the Musée du Pays de Sarrebourg displays over 800 objects from the Roman and Medieval periods of the Sarrebourg area. The Roman artefacts were recovered in local excavations and include some exquisite jewellery, wall paintings, artisans’ tools, agricultural instruments and various other everyday items. The Medieval collections include sculptures made for various churches in this region of north eastern France. [Website]