Cake and Coffee
“Qu’ils mangent de la brioche” [“Let them eat cake”]
– Marie-Antoinette [1755 – 1793], Queen of France.
This rather shocking phrase was ascribed to Marie-Antoinette, husband of Louis XVI, according to Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Supposedly when there was no bread to be had in Paris and the peasantry was close to revolt, she was dismissive of their protests. In fact the precise words may not actually have been spoken by her, but the phrase has entered into folklore and has come to symbolise the struggle of peasants against their oppressors. The first recorded reference to the phrase was in the writings of Rousseau, when he described how on one accasion he was so splendidly dressed that he was embarrassed to go into a common bread shop to buy bread, so he resorted to cake instead. This was despite him having just stolen a bottle of wine he was wanting to drink and he was searching for bread to go with it… He justified his actions by referring in his writings to “a great princess” who had declared “let them eat brioche”.
In Lund we are however blessed with some excellent breadshops. There is no need to resort to cake. Bread is my personal downfall and I have difficulty passing by Broder Jakobs Stenugnsbageri in Klostergatan without buying one of their unique knäckebröds, authentic beyond words. I should hastily add that this is but one of many excellent bakers in the city and readers are encouraged to explore each and every one of them, limited only by the wish to maintain a reasonable waistline. You can even bake your own knäckebröd, following a recipe from Swedish Television SVT that you can find at www.svt.se/recept/knackebrod-1
On the 14th August we at Science Village Scandinavia had a good reason to follow Marie-Antoinette’s advice. The peasants were not starving on this occasion but rather we had received the excellent news that, one week earlier, the Swedish government had approved the implementation of the zoning plan for Brunnshög, the region where Science Village is located. The consequences of this decision are far-reaching, as Anders Almgren, Chairman of Lund’s Municipal Council recognised:
“The fact that Lund and Sweden are hosting two world-leading research facilities [ESS and MAX IV] provides enormous potential not only for Lund but for the entire region and also nationally. It’s good that the government has put down its foot regarding the security issues that have been raised and that we can now fully implement the development of Science Village, which is so crucial to maximizing the benefits of the facilities”.
This means that there is clear blue water ahead that allows the development of Science Village for the benefit of the two facilities and the wider community. Read more here (in Swedish):
To mark this occasion, we took the opportunity, rather spontaneously, to invite many of our friends of Science Village Scandinavia to join us for fika, not with kanelbullar as is more usual but with mouth-watering cakes from Mormors Bageri here in Lund. It was a jolly event!
Let them eat cake!
31st August 2018