Skip to main content

Excerpts from The Prisoner of Chillon


Chateau de Chillon
There are seven pillars of Gothic mould, 
In Chillon's dungeons deep and old, 
There are seven columns, massy and grey, 
Dim with a dull imprison'd ray, 
A sunbeam which hath lost its way, 
And through the crevice and the cleft 
Of the thick wall is fallen and left; 
Creeping o'er the floor so damp, 
Like a marsh's meteor lamp: 
And in each pillar there is a ring, 
And in each ring there is a chain; 
That iron is a cankering thing, 
For in these limbs its teeth remain, 
With marks that will not wear away, 

Lake Leman
Lake Leman lies by Chillon's walls: 
A thousand feet in depth below 
Its massy waters meet and flow; 
Thus much the fathom-line was sent 
From Chillon's snow-white battlement, 
Which round about the wave inthralls: 
A double dungeon wall and wave 
Have made—and like a living grave 
Below the surface of the lake 
The dark vault lies wherein we lay: 
We heard it ripple night and day; 
Sounding o'er our heads it knock'd; 
And I have felt the winter's spray 
Wash through the bars when winds were high 

The Prisoner of Chillon, Eugène Delacroix, 1834*
It might be months, or years, or days— 
I kept no count, I took no note— 
I had no hope my eyes to raise, 
And clear them of their dreary mote; 
At last men came to set me free; 
I ask'd not why, and reck'd not where; 
It was at length the same to me, 
Fetter'd or fetterless to be, 
I learn'd to love despair. 
And thus when they appear'd at last, 
And all my bonds aside were cast, 
These heavy walls to me had grown 
A hermitage—and all my own! 

The Prisoner of Chillon was written by Lord Byron in 1816. Please read the poem in its entirety here: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/43842/the-prisoner-of-chillon

*The Prisoner of Chillon painting is from the collection of the Louvre Museum, Paris. It was painted in 1834 by Eugène Delacroix, a French Romantic artist. Oil on canvas. This painting is in the public domain.

Where to stay:
Grand Hotel Swiss Majestic, Autograph Collection
Avenue des Alpes 45, Montreux
Convenient location overlooking Lake Geneva and a stone’s throw from the train station (perfect for travelers planning on exploring nearby cities like Lausanne, Gstaad, etc.)

*****

Photographs by TravelswithCharie

Popular posts from this blog

8 Heritage Houses of Iloilo

Lizares Mansion The province of Iloilo on the island of Panay has a rich trove of heritage houses, left over from the sugar industry boom in the 19th century. Iloilo also had the largest port in the Philippines at that time which facilitated the export of sugar to foreign shores and deposited money in the hands of the sugar barons. The barons dropped their earnings into the acquisition of properties in Negros and the construction of beautiful homes in Iloilo, many of which are located in the vicinity of the Jaro Cathedral. The Lizares Mansion was built in 1937 by Don Emiliano Lizares for his wife, Concepcion Gamboa and five children. The family fled to safety when World War II broke out and the house was occupied by the Japanese military. The family returned to the house after the war but left once again after the demise of Don Emiliano. It was sold to the Dominican order in the 1960s and was converted in 1978 to a private school, Angelicum School. The mansion now houses the

Filipino Struggles in History - Carlos Botong Francisco

In 1968, Antonio Villegas (then Mayor of Manila), commissioned Carlos "Botong" Francisco to paint the history of Manila for Manila City Hall. The series of large scale paintings was called  Kasaysayan ng Maynila  (History of Manila).  The paintings deteriorated over time and no attempt was made to preserve these historical canvases until 2013 when Mayor Amado Lim sent them to the National Museum for extensive restoration. Four years later, in 2017, Mayor Joseph Ejercito Estrada and the Manila City Council signed an agreement with the National Museum to leave the paintings at the museum so they may reach a larger audience in exchange for museum grade reproductions to replace the originals. Kasaysayan ng Maynila was later renamed Filipino Struggles in History and is now on display at the Senate Hall of the National Museum . Carlos "Botong" Francisco died in March 1969, a few months after completing the paintings. He is one of the first Filipino modernists and

The Art of Carlos Botong Francisco - Progress of Medicine in the Philippines

Pre-colonial period Pag-unlad ng Panggagamot sa Pilipinas (The Progress of Medicine in the Philippines) is a group of four large-scale paintings depicting healing practices in the Philippines from pre-colonial times to the modern period. Carlos Botong Francisco was commissioned in 1953 by  Dr. Agerico Sison who was then the director of Philippine General Hospital (PGH) together with   Dr. Eduardo Quisumbing of the National Museum, Dr. Florentino Herrera, Jr. and Dr. Constantino Manahan. These oil on canvas paintings measure 2.92 meters in height and 2.76 meters in width (9.71 ft x 8.92 ft) and were displayed at the main entrance hall of PGH for over five decades. Owing to its location, the artworks were in a state of "severe deterioration" at the beginning of the 21st century from exposure to heat, humidity, dirt, dust, smoke, insect stains, grime, termites and an oxidized synthetic resin used in an earlier restoration. These canvases were restored three times, the last was