The Court of Visura in the Square of the Sant Julià de Lòria


This 1887 photograph of the court of Visura in the square of the Sant Julià de Lòria, Andorra, was taken by Jean-Auguste Brutails (1859‒1926), a French archivist and researcher who travelled to Andorra in that year. Sant Julià de Lòria is the main town in the parish of that same name, which is located in the southern part of the principality. The court of Visura was created in the 16th century to ensure the proper use of water, the river banks, and the condition of roads, and to treat conflicts between the community and individuals. As an archivist concerned with the eastern Pyrenees, Brutails was seeking to gain access to the records of the cathedral of La Seu d'Ugell (also seen as Seo de Urgel). His companion was the veguer (administrative judge) Charles Romeu. During his stay in Andorra and La Seu, Brutails took a number of pictures that the well-known French book illustrator Gaston Vuillier (1846‒1915) later used to produce engravings and book illustrations. In 1888, Brutails was appointed as a judge of the High Court of Andorra in Perpignan, France. In this role, he was required by the French government to devote himself to the thorough study of the laws and customs of Andorra. The investigations he carried out and his work as a jurist were the basis for La Coutume d'Andorre (The customs of Andorra), a compilation of traditions and common law published in Paris in 1904.

Last updated: March 24, 2017