Archive for January 28th, 2020

January 28, 2020

Little Melrand and St Barthélemy!!!

So , here we are again driving around my beautiful Morbihan dept 56 of the region of Bretagne/Brittany in my belle France. There is so much to see I had said will take me a lifetime and won’t be enough.

Folks do come in hordes here and including other Europeans but usually they all concentrate on the wonderful Gulf of Morbihan south of me (or the sea side). However, there is so much on what we call côte ou en terre or inland that will amazed you . Of course  ,you need to like architecture and history as I do.

Let me take you to two small gems in the Morbihan. Hope you enjoy the off the beaten path sites.

The town of Melrand is located in the department of Morbihan,56 in the region of Bretagne/Brittany. The oldest mention of the name of Melrand is attested in 1125 in the cartulary of Redon, in the form of Melran parrochia. In 1273, the name is written Melrant, in 1387 we find the current form of Melrand.

Melrand is a rural town belonging to the community of towns of the Pays de Baud. The village is located 14 km from Pontivy, 15 km from Baud, 32 km from Lorient and 45 km from Vannes. The town is bordered to the east by the Blavet valley. It is crossed by the Sarre, Houée, Brandifrout and Blavet rivers (D142). It is traditional to make Melrand a Breton town resulting from the emigration of Bretons driven from Great Britain by the Anglo-Saxons in the 5C and who settle along the coasts and rivers by clearing sparsely inhabited lands. How Bretagne or Little Britain can to be way back….

melrand

Some of the things to see in town and around it are in no particular order:  Cross of Kerentrec’h., Well of Kerhoh. Motténic stone burial mound (tumulus). It was excavated at the end of the 19C , and is located in a heath dependent on the village of Locmaria. It is 27 meters in diameter by 2 meters in height. The Calvary on base and altar on the road to Guémené-sur-Scorff 19C, and located on the road to Guémené at the exit of the town. Other bigger monuments are the Flamboyant 16C Locmaria Chapel: bell tower, 16C stained glass windows, 17C altarpiece, statues, 16C baptismal font. Flamboyant 15C Saint-Fiacre chapel: 16C rood screen one of the last four still in place in the Morbihan, painted panels, 17C wooden altarpiece elements and two statues, holy water baptismal font. And the Notre-Dame du Guelhouit Chapel and its 17C scala: located in the hollow of the valley where the Sarre river flows and at the foot of a hill with wooded slopes. The chapel is dated 1683.

The main church is the Church of St. Pierre (Peter) 15-17C with a granite bell tower from 1733. The parish church dedicated to Saint-Pierre is a complex church that has been altered many times over the centuries. It retains, on the south side, part of the nave from the first half of the 15C, pierced by a broken arch window as well as two molded doors on balusters with capitals. The southern porch and the interior arcade of the north chapel, located at the entrance to the choir, are also a survival from medieval times, probably from the first half of the 16C. The date 1661 written on the porch corresponds to a late modification. Five half-chapels, two to the south and three to the north have been grafted onto the long nave. The chevet with sides is flanked by a sacristy on the south wall. The southern porch is preserved. The bell tower has a massive square tower with octagonal drum and polygonal spire in masonry.

melrand

melrand

You need a car to reach these small in land town but the quant beauty of their natural habitat will entice you as me to come back. I saw posting for the Taxi Nicol tel +33 (0)6 80 20 33 48, and even by the city/town hall. The train station closest is Vannes, and the airport is  Lorient Lann Bihoué the exact location but also officially known as the South Brittany airport or Bretagne Sud. Of course, I always come by car and up my alley on the road D768 put you in touch with this world very easily, you connect with the road D142 to reach Melrand and St Barthélemy.

A bit on the history in French of MelrandCity of Melrand on history and heritage

Saint-Barthélemy is located on the way to Melrand on the road D142 up from the D768 from my house in about 45 minutes. Old truce of Baud erected in town on July 17, 1867 . There is a nice looking modern Church of Saint-Barthélemy 19-20C. In the shape of a Latin cross, it was built near the old chapel of Saint-Barthélemy which has become a parish church since 1871. The old chapel which dates from the 16C was demolished, and in 1891 gave way to an ordinary modern Gothic style chruch. It is a large nave ending in a semicircular apse. The current church was blessed on October 27, 1895. The bell tower was built in 1913.

A bit of info in French on the town of St Barthélemy is here: City of Saint Barthelemy on heritage

And there you a wonderful ride off the beaten path into deep Morbihan, what a pleasure it is always.  And of course the shopping local is simply the best and when it goes along with the sights it is what my idea of my belle France , beautiful Morbihan and lovely Bretagne is all about.

Enjoy the ride thru Saint Barthélemy and Melrand! And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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January 28, 2020

The Poul Fetan at Quisinic!

Here we are in back country Morbihan dept 56 of my Bretagne in my belle France. I have passed by here several times but never got in too inland me thought but trying to see it all and with my boys decided to go in into nature and see a wonderful site that in Summer should be awesome.

Let me introduce you Poul Fetan in the small town of Quistinic. Of course in winter it is closed but I got a special peek inside ::)

Poul-Fetan means the washhouse of the fountain in the Breton language. It was built in the 16C, Poul-Fetan is located on the top of a steep valley overlooking the Blavet valley. As in many villages, the modernization of agriculture has little by little made traditional agriculture disappear, the peasants left the countryside to gain the city, and Poul-Fetan fell into oblivion in the 1960s -1970.

quistinic

Poul-Fetan was acquired by the town of Quistinic in 1977. Thanks to the tenacity of a team of volunteers, supported by the town, the village will escape the announced death and will be reborn from its ashes. The restoration of the buildings began in 1979 and as of 1985 the village opens to the public.   Today, the numerous activities offered on the site allow you to rediscover this rural life of yesteryear. A leap in time which is an enchantment for both young and old!

quistinic

A journey between nature and traditions in Morbihan. With family or friends share a good time in a village that lives to the rhythm of the 19C. Take part in daily life activities such as washerwomen, pancakes, butter, etc. 17 Breton games such as stilts, skittles, pucks, etc. Discover the shops and the craftsmen of the village.

Quistinic

Welcoming and generous, the artisans perpetuate here ancestral gestures: making butter, spinning wool, feeding farm animals , so many unique moments in which you are warmly invited to participate. If the work is sometimes rough, you will laugh out loud at the tasty gossip of the washerwomen. After the effort, you will feast on good dishes at the Auberge Ti Fanch ‘ such as the soup cooked in the fireplace, farz with bacon or vegetables etc. Here, you can taste the specialties with a wooden spoon and the flavors are incomparable. At the edge of the village, typical Breton games to challenge yourself with family or friends, and the beautiful chestnut forest which invites young and old to have fun in the company of facetious korrigans. In Poul-Fetan, each house tells the soul of Brittany through the families who lived here over a hundred and fifty years ago!!

quistinic

Some webpages in English to help you plan your trip here are

Official Poul Fetan village

City of Quistinic on Poul Fetan village in French

Tourist office of Morbihan 56 on Poul Fetan village

tourist office of Brittany on Poul Fetan village

In town, and around you have apart from the seven chapels scattered throughout the countryside, the town has the particularity of hosting two religious buildings side by side. The Saint Pierre Church dates from the 18C, its bell tower is wonderful. Next to it stands the Saint Mathurin Chapel, the current chapel dates from the 18C, but another chapel or an oratory stood in the same place from the 15C.

Some directions to get to his inland wonderful area full of nature of my beloved Morbihan. You go there on the expressway N165/E60 direction Lorient, get off at the expressway N24 direction Rennes, exit/sortie at La Gare de Baud. The old train station no longer in use of Baud! I go from Pluvigner on the road D102 direction Languidic past this town continue on the D102 and on the site of Kerantarf take the road D23 becoming same road the D327 and signs will take you up hilly road to Route de Kerfec to the Poul Fetan village. This is all country inland nature and narrow hilly roads ok.

Some info on public transport , of course , never taken it here just for info ok.You can go with a bit of effort by bus from Lorient Gare d’échange, CTRL network on line 42E until Kergonan, then bus line 46  until Quistinic , you walk about 1km to the village. Info on buses here: https://www.ctrl.fr/mes-lignes/ligne-42e

Bus Line 46 : Quistinic Centre <> Languidic- Kergonan. From Paris Montparnasse you can take the TGV to the Gare de Lorient and do the bus as above. Also, there is an airport in Lorient Aéroport de Lorient Bretagne Sud that regular flights from Paris and Lyon, and need to take a bus to the above Gare d’échange (bus terminal) and then as above. Info on the airport here: https://www.lorient.aeroport.fr/en

Here is the town of Quistinic on the heritage things to see there: Town of Quistinic on heritage

And there you go, another wonderful spot now bette known in my wonderful Morbihan 56 which never stops to amaze me on its beauty and diversion of things to see and do. Hope in family you can enjoy it too, the Poul Fetan village. 

And remember, happy travels, good health,and many cheers to all!!!

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January 28, 2020

The treasures of Languidic, Morbihan!

And back in my home , do make runs here and there to be able to see the wonderful treasures I have nearby.  This was the case this week when I took around into the town of Languidic about 30 minutes from home by car, and came upon some familiar monuments that needed to see more closely.

I have been to the town before briefly and as often the case came back for more up close details. My previous post on Languidic is here: My previous post on Languidic in my blog

I like to tell you more on this picturesque town of the Morbihan dept 56 of my lovely Bretagne.  The town of Languidic by its surface, the most extensive town of the Morbihan in the county of Lorient. It is located 35 km from Vannes, department prefecture (capital city), 30 km from Pontivy and 18.5 km from Lorient, sub-prefectures , as well of 10 km from Hennebont, the capital of the canton. The road RN 24 expressway, linking Rennes to Lorient, crosses Languidic from north-east to south-west for approximately 15 km. north-west / south-east axis with a branch line joining the departmental D765; the departmental D 158, on a northeast / southwest axis; the departmental D 189, to the east, which joins the departmental D4; and the departmental D 724 which follows the axis of the expressway; and the departmental D 765 which serves the village of Tréauray in the extreme south. Languidic is served by bus line 17 of the TIM network (regional dept network). Half an hour by road from the town of Languidic, you will find the Lorient – Bretagne Sud airport with flights to Paris, Lyon etc on a limited basis, and there is no train station so connection is done in neary towns such as Lorient.

A bit of history I like , briefly is

The War of Brittany’s Succession. The town was first supporters of Jeanne de Penthièvre, Henry de Spinefort, captain of the city of Rennes, and his brother Olivier, captain of the city of Hennebont, soon joined Jean de Montfort (to take duchy against king of France). They notably defend the city of Hennebont during the siege of Charles de Blois (for the king of France); the Languidian campaigns are then plundered by the Breton and French soldiers.

Languidic’s first city council, made up of the mayor and eight municipal officers, met in 1790 in the church sacristy. However, revolutionary fever does not take. In 1791, the members of the assembly gave up their function, no longer recognizing themselves in the ideas of the new regime. As in the rest of France, the priests are hunted down. From 1794, the presence of troops was essential to protect the Republicans (revolutionaries) entrenched in the town; the Chouans (rebels against the revolution) are becoming more and more daring; in late 1794, they venture into the town and cut down the tree of Liberty, and in the night of March 4 to 5, 1795, they kill the mayor. When the Quiberon Breton immigrants (from England) landed in 1795, hundreds of Languidicians went into battle; 87 are taken prisoner and released after paying a ransom. In Languidic, in 1799, the Chouans found themselves facing a republican troop. The fight was over, the former dispersed the latter. Royalists take over the territory: a cache of weapons and clothing is set up in the Kérallan wood. Fierce opposing the French revolution in this area of my Bretagne.

At the fall of the First Empire,(Napoléon I) the municipal council affirmed its attachment to the Royalist regime: in 1820, Languidic participated in the national subscription of the Château de Chambord; in 1822, it voted subsidies for the erection of a war memorial for the Quiberon expedition and a monument to Georges Cadoudal (General hero of the Chouans native of Auray) During his official trip to Bretagne in 1960, the President of the French Republic Charles de Gaulle stopped in the town to greet the people gathered on the Place de l’Église. Upon his death, it is decided that this square will bear his name; Place Général de Gaulle.

The city page presentation ,location is here: City of Languidic on location and presentation of the town

The things to see here are many, we have concentrated on two of them in city center.

The église St Pierre or St. Peter’s Church was built between 1876 and 1879 and replaces two older buildings. The first was erected around 1329, in roughly the same location. The second was built in the 15C, perhaps in 1453 or 1433. This date is inscribed, in Gothic letters, on one of the beams and outside of the building The church was built at different times, that is why we found inside Romanesque capitals when the whole was in ogival style. Today, the church shelters one of the rare bells of the region prior to the French revolution. “Kolas” or Nicolas dates from 1783 and was not melted because it was used for civil sounding of the bell. The silver chalice and the tin ciborium, respectively from the 17C and 18C. In 1933, a martyrdom was built on Place Général-de-Gaulle.

languidic

languidic

Between 1980 and 1990, several renovations marked the 100th anniversary, including, among other things, the installation of two huge stained glass windows in the transepts and the installation of gas heating.  The huge stained glass windows were done in 1982 , one the creation of the world and the other the Jerusalem celebration. In 2000, a roof repair was undertaken. An unfortunate incident destroyed part of the bell tower, which will be rebuilt and consolidated, regaining its supremacy in March 2001. At the beginning of 2002, a complete cleaning of the exterior was carried out, restoring their shine to the original stones.

languidic

languidic

In the town’s center, the Chapelle Notre-Dame-des-Fleurs Chapel, in flamboyant Gothic style, was built in the 15C , started in 1451 , and then restored in the 18C and 19C. A Calvary, dating from the 17C, stands at the entrance. The Chapelle is located at the corner of rue des Fleurs and rue Saint-Aubin, and a few meters from the presbytery. It was done in devotion to the Virgin Mary , indeed, the chapel was mentioned on September 28, 1451 in a document of Pope Nicolas V. In flamboyant Gothic style, the chapel is built on a plan in the shape of a Latin cross comprising a single nave, a transept and a choir with a flat chevet. is 25 meters long and about 6.5 meters wide. The blue flower means at the same time the Mother and the Virgin.

languidic

languidic

The uniqueness of this Chapel is the following. The Association of Parishioners of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Morbihan of the Ukrainian Diocese of the Patriarchate of Constantinople was newly created to serve the spiritual needs of their community, which is also joined by the faithful of Russian, Georgian and French Orthodox origin. The Chapelle Notre Dame des Fleurs is lent to them once a month by the rector of the parish of Languidic, so that his Christian brothers in the other lung of the universal Church can find a place of prayer and this with the blessing of the bishop, once a month. Here, worship is practiced in their original language and traditions. The readings are read by members of the parish, in Ukrainian and French What you know in my little corner of the world as it is only 30 minutes from my house by car!

The town of Languidic on the Chapelle: The city of Languidic on the Chapelle Notre Dame des Fleurs

The regional tourist office of Lorient: Tourist office of Lorient Bretagne south on Languidic things to see

Other things worth seeing here are the Castle of Kerrous (19C), Castle of Quellenec (15C to 18C) and the Castle de la Fôret (17C to 19C). In the cemetery, you will find the tomb of Marie-Thérèse-Perrine-Joséphine Hersart de la Villemarqué, daughter of the philologist Théodore Hersart de La Villemarqué and the recumbent figure of Pierre Guillozo, former parish priest of Languidic. To cure a shy child or a child with speech difficulties, legend has it that parents place a sachet of seeds or stones there after a prayer.

Finally, as in my wonderful Morbihan, the Languidic territory is integrated into the production areas of 3 products benefiting from a protected geographical indication (IGP): Cider of Bretagne or Breton cider, black wheat flour from Bretagne (in Breton; Gwinizh du Breizh) and poultry from Bretagne; simply the best of my lovely Bretagne and my belle France.

And there you go ,now I feel redeemed to show you this part of my lovely Morbihan dept 56, so much to see and we will keep coming back for more step by step in a never ending search for beauty, architecture, history,and just wonderful fields. Hope you enjoy my Languidic.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

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