Arzon :Church Notre Dame de l’Assomption!

Well as usual by now, I go into many places stop take some pictures and move on with so much to see in my belle France, there is always time to come back. And I do come back , eventually. This is the case of this post.

Many times in this lovely town in the Rhuys peninsula and some posts on it but not in depth as it should. Now new text and photos for the Church Notre Dame de l’Assomption in the town of Arzon. Hope you enjoy as I did.

Arzon is a town located at the end of the presqu’île de Rhuys ( Rhuys peninsula), it is bordered to the north by the Gulf of Morbihan, south by the bay of Quiberon, western part of Mor Braz (the big sea by the Breton just before going out into the Atlantic ocean) , and to the east by the town of Saint-Gildas-de-Rhuys (see post). The town of Arzon has two seaside resorts of very different characters: Port-Navalo (see post), dating from the early 20C (see post) , and Le Crouesty (see post). The town has 7 beaches! You take the expressway N165 from Vannes along the Nantes Brest axis,direction Nantes   and get off at exit or sortie Sarzeau, Rhuys on the road D780. there is a bus service on line 24  Port-Navalo – Arzon – Sarzeau – Vannes from the gare de Vannes to the peninsula done by the bus network Kiceo. 

The town of Arzon goes down in history by the big gate: it is the first place of the Rhuys Peninsula to appear in a written document, in 836, when Louis the Pious gave the land of Arzon to the prestigious abbey of Saint- Saviour of Redon. The very name of Arzon comes from the Latin “a redonense”, dependence of Redon.

Arzon has a secondary residence rate of 79.5% in 2020 and takes on the appearance of a ghost town outside the tourist season. It has 3 small islands around its territory such as Er Lannic, Hent Tenn and ïle de la Jument. Several tips going out to sea with great views dot the territory of Arzon such as Pointe du Béché; Pointe de Béninz; Pointe de Bilgroix; Pointe de Kerners; Pointe du Monteno; Pointe de Penbert; and Pointe de Saint-Nicolas.

The nice monument to see here is the Church Notre Dame de l’Assomption . The parish church of Arzon was completely remodeled in the 19C, but the site is, in fact, much older. Indeed, historically, the town of Locmaria (now the town center of Arzon) has developed around a priory, a small monastery dependent on the great abbey of Redon. The site consisted of a chapel, monks’ accommodation and a tithe barn. Only the latter survived, south of the current church.

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From 836 it can attest to the presence of a place of worship in the village of Arzon in Locmaria in the same place as today. Property of the Abbey of Redon, its size was modest but its fame great! It took scholars to evangelize the tip of the peninsula and compete with the Abbey of Saint-Gildas. However, over time it deteriorated. during the French revolution it became unusable and the services had to take place in the village of Kerner. Rebuilt and largely enlarged in 1815, was added a monumental neo-Gothic bell tower whose bells will be baptized in 1855. A series of embellishments and restorations followed, the most notable of which are the sanctuary in 1880, the bell tower in 1890 and a vault in 1920. The entire interior was redone in 1951.

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In 1673, 42 Arzon sailors were requisitioned from the Anglo-French fleet to fight the Dutch in the First Battle of Schooneveld on June 7. They made a wish to Sainte-Anne and all came back alive despite the defeat. A stained glass window pays tribute to this strong episode in local life as well as an annual pilgrimage to Sainte-Anne-d´Auray.

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In the Choir, there is an 1890 copy of the “Immaculate Conception of the Venerables”, a 1678 masterpiece by the famous Spanish Baroque painter, Bartolomé Esteban Murillo the original of which is on display at the Prado. Long exhibited in the Louvre, this copy would have joined Arzon during the works of 1951.

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Other things to see here are Pen Castel tide mill; Cairns du Petit Mont, the Butte de César as supposely he fought here against the local celtics tribe of Vénétes (which gave the name to Vannes); and the beaches of course.

As you might guess by now, the town per se is big even if the jurisdiction covers here the main bourg or city center ,there are many parts which I will cover in the next post. In all, it is very nice to come for a leisure day or weekend as we do and enjoy the boats, the beach, and get to walk around the main bourg to see wonderful monuments like the Church Notre Dame de l’Assomption.

The parish webpage for the Church is here in French: https://www.paroisse-arzon56.com/eglise-notre-dame-de-l-ascension

The tourist office of the Gulf of Morbihan on Arzonhttps://www.golfedumorbihan.bzh/explorer-vannes/decouvrir-vannes/golfe-morbihan/presquile-rhuys/arzon/

And there you go a bit more of an introduction to the town of Arzon and its main monument in city center. Hope you enjoy the tour and Arzon in its Rhuys Peninsula of the Morbihan dept 56!

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

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