La cour des Voraces - Lyon
The Cour des Voraces, also called Maison de la République, is a building court in the Pentes quarter, in the 1st arrondissement of Lyon, and famous for its enormous six-floor stairway of facade. It is a big traboule that link the number 9 of the Place Colbert and the number 14 bis of the montée de Saint-Sébastien or the number 29 of the rue Imbert-Colomès.
Situated on the slopes of the Croix-Rousse, the court is a major symbol of Lyon : built in 1840, it is a fine example of folk architecture ofcanuts, related to the silk industry, which deeply marked the neighborhood. It is also a place that symbolizes some great moments in the history of Lyon. A plaque says: “In the Cour des Voraces, hive of silk work, canuts struggled for their lives and their dignity.”
The court is certainly Voraces its name from a group of workers called the Voraces weavers, who distinguished themselves by their republican insurrections of 1848 and 1849.
According to sources, the Court of Voraces would have served as a refuge for canuts workers during their revolts. Given the date of construction, they may be fights during the second uprising of Voraces in 1849. But there is another hypothesis: the building would has housed the lodge of a mutual organization of canuts : Le Devoir mutuel. The deformed word Dévoirant, namely Le Devoir mutual members, would eventually have given the word “Voraces”.
During the Second World War, traboules of Lyon, dark and secret places, little known to foreigners, whose configuration favored covert activities enabled networks of resistance to escape from the surveillance of the German occupiers. Therefore, the Cour des Voraces remains often mentioned as a symbol of resistance.
In 1995, the Habitat et Humanisme Association led by Father Bernard Devers bought the place and launch the rehabilitation of the court that became a symbol of social housing.
The court (its floor and its two staircases) is classified as monument historique.