Saturday, July 12, 2008

Le bal des pompiers


Does anyone know why le bal des pompiers became the locus classicus for celebrating le 14 juillet?

5 comments:

David in Setouchi said...

No idea.
But I must underline that the "bal des pompiers" is to my knowledge mostly a Parisian thing.

No such thing where I'm from (South West). There are "bals populaires" but they are usually organized by the municipality (sometimes in association with non-profit organizations), but they are not affiliated with the firefighters in any way.

As for the origins of the bals (whether "des pompiers" or "populaires") on July 14th, I'm not too sure, but I assume it's related to the image/myth that people were so happy to hear the news that the Bastille had been struck down / the royalty had been struck down / privileges had been abolished (check whatever applies), that they started dancing and singing in every little square in every town and villages.

Just an assumption from me, but it fits the July 14th imagery and mythology.

Anonymous said...

The July the 14th "bal" is a classic, but as David indicated it's not necessarily "le bal des pompiers".

The "bal" (on the 14th or on any other day of the year) is sometimes organized by the firefighters as a way to collect funds. Along with other usual methods (calendars, "boudin des pompiers", "ball-trap", etc), used by associations. Pompiers do this mostly in small-towns & villages, where there are no professional firefighters, but only "des pompiers volontaires". The money raised is used for charities, to improve the local "caserne", and/or to pay for parties/diners.

Marc Pasturel said...

"Bal des pompiers" ne s'appliquerait, à ma connaissance qu'à une situation très particulière à un endroit où la caserne des pompiers profiterait de l'occasion pour organiser un bal.

Parlant de pompiers : toute personne désireuse de comprendre ce que veut dire "faire un pompier" peut me contacter à marc@soleil.com pour explication très succinte et totalement désintéressée . Comme il s'agit d'un sujet tabou et en rapport seulement avec la politique américaine récente, et non pas, à ma connaissance, la politique française, je préfère épargner d'une réponse le blog de French Politics.

Art, n'hésite pas à éliminer ce commentaire de ta rubrique si tu le juges inopportun et mal placé. Je comprendrai. Sache que je n'ai que l'apprentissage de la langue française à coeur, "no pun intended"...

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