Its most famous historical figure is the mathematician and philosopher Blaise Pascal who tested the Torricelli's hypothesis concerning the influence of gas pressure on liquid equilibrium by performing the famous experiment where a vacuum is created in a mercury tube all the way from Clermont-Ferrand up to the top of the Puy-de-Dôme (he actually asked from Paris his cousin Florin Périer to do that).
The most famous landmark is the Gothic Cathedral (Notre-Dame-de-l'Assomption) in black lava stones, from where the first crusade was called for (by Gerbert d'Aurillac).
The most famous place is place de Jaude where stands a grand statue of Vercingetorix sitting imperiously on a horse and holding a glaive. The inscription reads J'ai pris les armes pour la liberté de tous (I raised weapons for everyone's freedom). The greatest victory of the Gauls against the Romans was indeed earned nearby.
I was born there, on 30 September (1977), and lived in the city (in Saint-Jacques, south and nearby the University) in the period 1990-2005, before I emigrated (like Victor Hugo, first in Great-Britain, and to date, never to come back).
The picture on the right was taken by my father, with the first camera I had. A zoom of the background served as the main illustration of Clermont-Ferrand for the Wikipedia page since 24 July (2003) (see this archive). Incredibly, it survived till 12 September 2013.
In the Hôtel Reboul.
Napoleonian pause with Vercingetorix (J'ai prix les armes pous la liberté de tous.)
Innumerable before they became sparse enough to be recorded: