1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Meiringen

MEIRINGEN, the principal village on the Hasle (or the upper Aar) valley in the Swiss canton of Bern. It is built at a height of 1969 ft. on the right bank of the Aar and on the level floor of the valley, but is much exposed to the south wind (or Föhn), and has several times been in great part destroyed by fire (1632, 1879 and 1891). It has 3077 inhabitants, all German-speaking and Protestants. The parish church is ancient, and above it are the ruins of the medieval castle of Resti. Meiringen is frequented by travellers in summer, as it is the meeting-point of many routes: from Interlaken by the lake of Brienz and Brienz, from Lucerne by the Brünig railway (28, m.), from Engelbergby the Joch Pass (7267 ft.), from the upper Valais by the Grimsel Pass (7100 ft.), and from Grindelwald by the Great Scheidegg Pass (6434 ft.). Many waterfalls descend the hill-sides, the best known being the Reichenbach and the Alpbach, while the great gorge pierced by the Aar through the limestone barrier of the Kirchet is remarkable. The village and valley belonged of old to the emperor, who in 1234 gave the advowson to the Knights of St Lazarus, by whom it was sold in 1272 to the Austin Canons of Interlaken, on the supf pression of whom in 1528 it passed to the state. In 1310 the emperor mortgaged the valley to the lords of Weissenburg, who sold it in 1334 to the town of Bern.  (W. A. B. C.)