Thursday, 1 July 2010

Bieuzy les Eaux

The sleepy-looking village of Bieuzy-les-Eaux is one of those places which seem to have been left behind by time. It long enjoyed some religious importance and has one of Brittany's more extraordinary chapels (of which more tomorrow). St Nicholas des Eaux, just down the road, was a major trading centre in the nineteenth century, thanks to its navigable river. However, like so many similar places, it went from thriving port to backwater when the railways took over, and its neighbour seems to have suffered similar harder times.

Yet signs of former wealth are apparent in Bieuzy, notably this ornate well. With its shaped stonework and carved heads, it's rather fancier than the norm. I haven't been able to discover any further information about it, but the mitred head on the right suggests a religious reference. Very apt, as it's just across the road from the church.


Sebastien Ardouin said...

Lovely well. 17th century I'd say. Could the mitred head represent one of the local saints, St Gildas or his disciple St Bieuzy? Looking forward to the visiting the church tomorrow...

CarolineLD said...

I think you're right - the houses behind are from that period, so it's lovely that the original wellhead appears to have survived too.

You may be right about the head being one of the saints, I hadn't thought of that but it would make sense!