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Medieval settlement of one barony out of the 12 that existed in the Rouergue, it is today a protected site in the Aveyron : you will be amazed by this hamlet and its castle overlooking the Lézert gorges and its meanders down from its rocky spur!
More than 1,000 years of history...
Named Castrum Marinum in Latin, the hamlet's history can be dated back to 10th century, most probably.
Its nature defences - dense forest, steep land & rocks - & its geographical location - at the gates of the Rouergue region - explain its major military role : remains of the Castelmary Castle still testify to the important role played by this village in the Middle Age.
Owned by the Castelmaries from 11th to 14th century, this place was occupied by several Lords until the last ones : the Puel de Parlan family. These viscounts had bought the barony for exactly 115,700 pounds in 1774.
The last information about its history we are aware of date back to February 1790, at the time of the outburst of violence in the Ségala, 8 months after "la Grande Peur" (the "Great Fear"). However, some windows dating back to 1840 lead us to believe that the castle was inhabited during the 19th century.
... that waited for us.
Today, only some sections of walls of the castle remain - private property. The church remains are used as a way to bypass the village entrance & the main tower. The site is registered among the "Bâtiments de France" ("Buildings of France").
Now, the district economy relies on agriculture : cattle, pig or poultry breedings & cereal crops.
Let's "culture" a bit: what is "la Grande Peur" ?
It was a collective fear bustle that happened in France from July 19th 1789 to August 6th 1789. It begun in the provinces & is founded on rumours of aristocratic plot. Indeed, the word was spreading that bandits were recruited by aristicrats to travel the country to cut green wheat & destroy the crops.
Enchanting charm of the Lézert River:
Going through the district, the Lézert River springs in the Castanet District. Supplied with water by various tributaries, it flows into the Viaur River in the village of Port de la Besse, after a journey between wild, wooded & steep-sided gorges. Take the measure of these rivers by walking the Entre Lézert et Viaur trail (explanations in French)!
12800 Castelmary lat. 44.182201 - lon. 2.246200
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