"La Bénichon"


Category:
Social practices
Canton:

Description

"Bénichon" is to Fribourg what "Kilbi" is to German-speaking Switzerland. The term originally denoted a hearty feast in which the full range of farm produce was brought to the family table: a broth or perhaps a cabbage soup would be followed by several courses of beef, pork and mutton with plenty of vegetables and then an ample selection of desserts. "La Bénichon" later came to be associated with the finery of the ball and popular celebrations. When the barns are full of grain and the herds have come home, it is time for the village to celebrate, albeit with a tinge of sadness that the summer is over. With a few exceptions in certain places, "la Bénichon" is held on the second Sunday of September in the lowlands and the second Sunday of October in the mountains. It is also celebrated in the towns as lots of people come together, supermarkets sell regional produce, and restaurants throughout the region offer seasonal menus. While it comes in many forms all over the canton of Fribourg, they all have one thing in common: a highlight of the annual calendar for the whole family and the whole community to enjoy.

Image gallery

  • Making bricelet wafers at the Marché de la Bénichon, Ecuvillens © Charly Rappo, HEP FR, 2009
  • Smoked ham is often the centrepiece of the Bénichon meal. © Charly Rappo, HEP FR, 2009
  • Fairground rides on the Place du marché in Bulle on Bénichon Sunday © Charly Rappo, HEP FR, 2009
  • Traditional menu in a restaurant in La Gruyère, 1990s (I) © Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Traditional menu in a restaurant in La Gruyère, 1990s (II) © Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Bénichon dance. Drawing by Joseph Reichlen in La Gruyère illustrée, 1903 © Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Waiting for the Bénichon procession in Châtel-Saint-Denis, 1938 © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Official Bénichon meal in Châtel-Saint-Denis, 19 October 1953 © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Bénichon seesaw, Vuippens © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Bénichon dance in Treyvaux, canton of Fribourg, 1935 © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Bénichon merry-go-round in Châtel-Saint-Denis, 1938 © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Making bricelet wafers at the Marché de la Bénichon, Ecuvillens © Charly Rappo, HEP FR, 2009
  • Smoked ham is often the centrepiece of the Bénichon meal. © Charly Rappo, HEP FR, 2009
  • Fairground rides on the Place du marché in Bulle on Bénichon Sunday © Charly Rappo, HEP FR, 2009
  • Traditional menu in a restaurant in La Gruyère, 1990s (I) © Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Traditional menu in a restaurant in La Gruyère, 1990s (II) © Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Bénichon dance. Drawing by Joseph Reichlen in La Gruyère illustrée, 1903 © Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Waiting for the Bénichon procession in Châtel-Saint-Denis, 1938 © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Official Bénichon meal in Châtel-Saint-Denis, 19 October 1953 © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Bénichon seesaw, Vuippens © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Bénichon dance in Treyvaux, canton of Fribourg, 1935 © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle
  • Bénichon merry-go-round in Châtel-Saint-Denis, 1938 © Glasson/Musée gruérien, Bulle

References and documentation

Publications
  • Anne Philipona Romanens, Jean-Pierre Papaux : Chantons, dansons, bénichonnons. Hier et aujourd’hui. Fribourg, 2011

  • Valérie Clerc : La Bénichon. Une tradition en mouvement. In : Cahier du Musée gruérien no. 1, 1997, p. 17-28

  • Valérie Clerc : Le goût de la fête. Modalités et transformations de la Bénichon comme reflets de la société. In : Le Goût. Acte du colloque de Dijon 1996. Dijon, 1998, p. 285-294

  • Anne-Marie Yerly-Quartenoud : La Bénichon. Du four banal au micro-onde. In : Présences no. 35, 1998

  • Etienne Suter : La Bénichon au pays de Fribourg. In : Nouvelles Etrennes Fribourgeoises. 1934, p. 102-123

  • Elisabeth Schwab-Salzmann : «Chüechleni, Brätzele und Änisbröötleni». Brauchtum und Rezepte rund um die «Chülbi-Menüs» im Deutschfreiburg. In: Freiburger Nachrichten, 10.11.2001

Documentation
  • La Bénichon

    description détaillée Last modification: 27.08.2012
    Size: 249 kb
    Type: PDF