Last modified: 2014-04-26 by ivan sache
Keywords: manche | périers |
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The municipality of Périers (2,390 inhabitants in 2012; 1,462 ha; municipal website) is located in the heart of the Cotentin peninsula.
Périers was once located on a main Roman way, used by the Roman
legions commanded by Sabinus marching against Viridovix. The village
was a main center of cattle-breeding and butter production, nicknamed
"Carthago of Cotentin".
Périers was destroyed at 80% in June-July 1944. Located in the middle of the German supply road and providing an escape route to the port of Cherbourg, the village was fiercely defended by the Germans. The 90th Infantry Division of the US Army lost more than 1,100 men in the assault. These heroes are remembered by the "Four Brave" bronze statue designed by Patrick Cottencin. Unveiled on 4 June 2000, the statue represents four soldiers killed on 14 June 1944 near Périers, Virgil Tangborn, Andrew Speese, Richard Ritchman and Tullio Micaloni, buried in the American cemetery of Colleville-sur-Mer. The sculptor described the monument as "a testimony for light and everyone's respect" (webpage).
The Franc Périers is a local currency minted during the interbellum by the Ledolley-Lamotte wine and spirit company. At the time, the Bank of France allowed the Chambers of Commerce, the traders and craftsmen to mint their own coin to overcome the shortage of silver coins (50 centimes, 1 franc and 2 francs) caused by excessive hoarding. Ledolley-Lamotte minted a small amount of nickelled zinc coins (75 centimes, 1 francs, 3 francs, 4 francs), of 25 mm in diameter
Ivan Sache, 9 September 2013
Flag of Périers - Image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 5 December 2013
The Town Hall of Fallingbostel, the German partner town of Périers, hoisted on 18 December 2012 a vertically divided blue-white flag with the municipal arms of Éragny shifted to the flag's top.
The coat of arms of Périer (image) is "Argent a pear tree eradicated vert a barrulet gules in base two lions sable affronty in base dexter and chief sinister a bend azure charged with three mullets or a barrulet gules in base".
[E. Guénée (ed.) Tout sur le département de la Manche, 1987]
The arms are canting, a pear-tree (French, poirier) being locally known as périer (but the etymology of the village's name has probably nothing to do with the tree). The lions are locally interpreted as dogs, referring to the dictum "Don't be bitten by the dogs of Périers".
Klaus-Michael Schneider & Ivan Sache, 5 December 2013