The Miniature Provençal Village of Grignan

Discover and experience the life of a Provençal village at the start of the 19th century.
All the traditions, trades, shops, people and animals as well as the colours and the joie de vivre are portrayed in scenes involving over 1000 santons.
More than 70 houses on a 1 to 6 scale are presented on a 400m² floor display.
You will find everything that makes up a village: the market square, the school and church, the bakery, pharmacy and grocery store, the hairdresser's and the trades such basket maker, woodworker, miller, grinder, washerwoman, fisherman, etc.
The work is remarkable, everything has been hand-made, including the 60,000 tiles that cover the roofs.

The Miniature Provençal Village of Grignan

Lou ravi (the happy guy) of the Provence creche

The three Wise Menof the Provencal Creche

The winegrowers sitting at the table

Dining scene - Provencal Santon

Provencal figures - Quarrel in the street scene

The origins of the santon dates from the Middle Ages. Theatre was very popular and the themes were based on peasant traditions. At the time, they presented living nativity scenes with, quite naturally, the inhabitants and animals of the village playing the main characters. The church's opposition to theatrical representations of the birth of the saviour saw the actors being progressively replaced by figures crafted of wood, cardboard, papier mâché or clay.
The first representative nativity scenes appeared in the 15th century. When the French Revolution started censoring religious holidays, the nativity scenes found refuge in the people's homes.
Over time, the “Sauntoun”, Little Saint in the Provençal language, found its place in popular culture and daily life is represented with the local costumes of the period.
The main figures remain the baby Jesus, the Virgin Mary, Saint Joseph, the ox and donkey, the three Wise Men and the shepherds.
The visit lasts on average 45 minutes. You can also find santons and regional products in the Boutique on the village square.
A wonder for the eyes and a great respect for the traditions of Provence.

Grignan decided to repeat the “World Nativity Scenes” exhibition in which 200 scenes are represented. In 2015/2016, the guest of honour was Italy.
At the exhibition you can discover nativity scenes from around the world, such as from Ireland with its scene made of wool, Burkina Faso and its scene in bronze, the Congo with a wooden scene and Spain with one made of paper…
All of the nativity scenes are magnificent and reflect the traditions of each country.

Le village provençal miniature - La Tuillière - Route de Valréas - 26230 Grignan

+33 (0)4 75 46 91 68

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