“Lake Leman Lies by Chillon’s Walls”

Lord Byron and Percy Bysshe Shelley visited Montreux Switzerland in 1816 and sailed on Lake Geneva, then called Lake Leman. Byron toured Chillon Castle which stands on the lake, and wrote his poem, “The Prisoner of Chillon,” about Francois Bonivard who was imprisoned in Chillon’s dungeons from 1532 -1536.
“There are seven pillars of gothic mould,
in Chillon’s dungeons deep and cold.”
“There are seven columns, mossy and grey,
Dim with a dull imprisoned ray”
(The dungeon is below.)
“They chained us each to column stone,
And we were three, yet each alone”
You can see the columns and just make out the iron loops for the chains towards the bottom of the closest one. A class of bored school children were listening to their teacher. She droned on way too long. If one just read the more gruesome lines of Byron’s poem and let the kids explore the dungeon, I bet they’d be hooked on poetry for life! I speak terrible French, but I swear I heard the teacher, say, “Listen Johann, you will be tested on this!” Laughing, there was nothing that would have made me listen less, but I digress…..
Chillon castle was home to the counts of Savoy from the mid 12th century.
The oldest bedroom in the castle has 14th century medieval murals.
Montreux and Lake Geneva are beautiful. There is an old city center that is fun to explore and lots of wonderful restaurants. We bid farewell to Switzerland now, as we head back to Germany.
Cheers to you from Sweet Suise!
Quotations from “The Prisoner of Chillon,” Lord Byron 1816.
For more on Bonivard check out: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fran%C3%A7ois_Bonivard

188 thoughts on ““Lake Leman Lies by Chillon’s Walls”

    • It really is a beautiful castle. All the castles had dungeons, and errrrr …….people who were in them! It was all part of the middle ages I guess. Can you imagine eating dinner with prisoners in the dungeon? I think I would prefer a cottage!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Aaaaaa, the Swiss…….gotta love place, I like to call it little castles, the buildings look like they have come out some fantasy child type of movie, the little town houses do have something to them. Not a lot of skycrapers there, which in one sense is good since I don´t look up constantly and end up with neck pain.


  2. Awesome castle! But I wouldn’t want to be chained up in that dungeon! I feel for those school children…”Test” is a dirty word at the moment as it also applies in my workplace and so far it’s not going at all well 😉 If I’m lucky I might still have a job at the end of it all! If not I will probably be chained up in that very dungeon you talk about here!! 😉


    • Eeeeks! Retirement is the only long term solution to such a job I am afraid. But they will never succeed in chaining you my friend. Let them try, Wolfie will eat them. Besides your mind flies high and clear in your blog and can never be chained. Let us know who dares to try such and we will bury them in bloggery!!! 🙂
      Seriously, if they don’t appreciate YOU, then they suck.
      That is just my professional clinical opinion~
      You can tell I was good at my job. I was, and I am right about this!!! ❤


    • This was a ceiling and I am not sure if it is of the same time period as the murals which I have photos of also. I am not sure of the century. Still this is an old castle and these are old ceilings and I agree with you, they are amazing. Thank you and cheers too~

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This took me straight back to going round Chillon when I was 7 or 8. It made a great impression on me and was the first postcard I ever bought! RH ps my father had Byron’s room at Trinity, Cambridge. I hoped to follow suit but the room allocations by the time I was at Trinity didn’t work out for me, sadly!


  4. Oh I just love this! I’ve always had a love of castles as well as a love of Byron’s poetry. It’s almost magical to be able to see these pictures while reading some… 😀


  5. I am always moved by what you share… the images always leave me breathless, along with your words such a delight to embrace. But I also wanted to let you know something that is not said enough…thank you for always blessing me with your visits…they are priceless blessings to me Cindy. God has allowed many in this world to become sisters and brothers through his genuine and selfless love. You are one of those gems! God bless you and thank you always!


  6. Poor Bonivard imprisoned in those dungeons for four years, never able to see the beauty of the surrounding waters and views. I bet it was extra damp in those dungeons.

    What is it with some teachers — that they can bore children silly with something that could be made interesting if delivered in a more entertaining style?


    • That is a million dollar question! I think either they are unexcited about the subject or just plain burned out. It is so fun to teach kids, but I imagine that day in and day out, year after year, one might get quite tired of it.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Beautiful photos of a fascinating place! It’s incredible how some teachers can turn something that kids should enjoy into something dull – takes a talent of sorts!!


  8. Pingback: “Lake Leman Lies by Chillon’s Walls” | penpowersong

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