Lyon is a city in east-central France in the Rhône-Alpes region, situated between Paris and Marseille. Lyon is located approximately 470 km from Paris and 320 km from Marseille. The residents of the city are called Lyonnais. The city of Lyon has 483,181 inhabitants. Together with its suburbs and satellite towns, Lyon forms the largest conurbation in France outside Paris with a population estimated to be 1,4 mln. Its urban region represents half of the Rhône-Alpes region population with 2.9 million inhabitants. Lyon is the capital of this region, as well as the capital of the smaller Rhône département. The city is known for its historical and architectural landmarks and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Lyon was historically known as an important area for the production and weaving of silk and in modern times has developed a reputation as the capital of gastronomy in France. It has a significant role in the history of cinema due to Auguste and Louis Lumière who invented the cinematographe in Lyon. The city is also known for its famous light festival 'Fete des Lumieres' which occurs every 8 December and lasts for four days, that earned Lyon the title of Capital of Lights. The legend says that the Virgin Mary saved the city from the plague, and to thank her a statue was built and on the day it was erected the whole city was lit by candles that its citizens put at their windows. The local professional football team, Olympique Lyonnais, has increased Lyon's profile internationally through participation in European football championships. Economically, Lyon is a major centre for banking as well as for chemical, pharmaceutical, and biotech industries. The city contains a significant software industry with a particular focus on video games, and in recent years has fostered a growing local start-up sector. Lyon also hosts the international headquarters of Interpol, Euronews and International Agency for Research on Cancer. Lyon is ranked 2nd in France as an economic centre and convention centre on some measures. Lyon was ranked 9th globally and 2nd in France for innovation in 2010. It ranked 38th globally in Mercer's 2010 liveability rankings.
Lyon Coat of Arms - In the Middle Ages, the coat of arms of the counts of Lyon consisted of a silver lion on a red field, or "gules", in the center of the coat of arms. The king of the beasts has no relation with the origin of the name of the city which is derived from the Latin "Lugdunum". Circa 1320, as a result of the royal protectorate, the fleurs-de-lis were added to the lion. During the Revolution, coats of arms fell from use but, in 1809, Napoleon Bonaparte restored them. The fleurs-de-lis were replaced by three bees representing the New Empire. It was during this period that a seven-point gold crown appeared, symbol of the ancient fortified cities. At the beginning of the Restoration, the Lyon took back its traditional coat of arms. In 1819, the City obtained from king Louis XVIII the addition of a sword above the lion, as a sign of royal appreciation for Lyon's resistance in 1793. In 1830, the July Monarchy rejected the fleurs-de-lis, and, rather than restoring the bees, replaced them with stars which were deemed more neutral. Thereafter, the wildest of fantasies paraded across the coat of arms. These reproductions were known as "false coats of arms". At the beginning of the 20th century, the City decided to restore the lion without the sword, with three fleurs-de-lis, symbol of the city for six centuries.
photo by lucky
edited by mobydick74
Added by tonymara