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Many passions in Valais village

The door to the Farinet house, now a museum, in Saillon

(Keystone)

The residents of Saillon near Sion in canton Valais are to present a passion play in the medieval streets of the village from December 15 to 17.

The play, by Arnoul Gréban is being put on by Saillon's medieval club, which organises events each year to remember the village's rich history as an important market town.

The play coincides with a special exhibition by Saillon's artisans at the local cultural centre. It runs until December 18.

Saillon is best known as the home of the 19th-century counterfeiter, Joseph Samuel Farinet, who became a local hero. Fittingly, Saillon is now home to a museum dedicated to counterfeiting.

It highlights minting techniques through the ages alongside examples of the tools of the trade of counterfeiters. A separate floor is devoted to the master criminal himself, Farinet.

Saillon is also the site of the world's smallest vineyard. It's exceptional because it's owned by none other than the Dalai Lama. The proceeds from the sale of the few thousand bottles produced each year go to charity.

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