Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Normandy Megalith the long man St Pierre Eglise

copyright paintwalk Feb 2016
La Longue Pierre (long Man or long stone) is a good height and easy to see from the road as you pass it. It has quite a dominating presence on the landscape and is probably part of a larger group of linear structures that have a long North South Axis. A lovely easy walk on a nice day as you can park in the centre of St Pierre Eglise (unless its market day) and walk down the narrow road to the megalith.
© paintwalk Feb 2016
The long Man Menhir is 4 metres high above the ground and placed in at a depth of 1.5 metres with the base being triangular.  Because of its unusual shape it changes its aspect depending on which side you view it, with one side favouring a triangular shape and the other a rectangular domed shape as shown in the photographs above and below.
© paintwalk Feb 2016
It was built in the neolithic period (5000 - 2500 B.C). The period of time in which hunter gatherers became part farmers that started to base themselves in the same landscape. This would have also been a time of denser populations when large work such as the erection of this stone could have been more easily undertaken. 
© paintwalk Feb 2016
Although nobody is certain, it is likely that these menhirs were burial sites that were more isolated than the dolmens that were used to cover skeletons and may have been for chiefs or families. These stones have long been places of worship that were used well after the original builders were long gone. Of the 6500 or so menhirs in France this is one of the most unspoilt in the North Normandy Area.
© paintwalk Feb 2016
St Pierre Eglise is close to Barfleur on the North Normandy coast and this is an easy megalith walk that's all on gentle inclines and no more than a mile each way. You can park in the centre of the centre of the town and head south towards the church taking a left on Rue de la longuemarerie and then just stay on that road. (Take a virtual map walk)
© paintwalk Feb 2016
As you start to go out of town you come to a healing oak a place of magic lore where by placing spikes in the tree the corresponding human ailment would be cured. A large number of Stones and boulders are placed around the tree and although I cant prove it, I believe these may once have been part of a dolmen or avenue of stones. There are at least 2 smaller menhirs (shown above) on the route and probably more if you keep your eyes open.
© paintwalk Feb 2016
At the end of the road you can take a right up the hill on the main road going back into town, but after being in this quiet avenue with hardly even room for a single car it's just as nice to retrace your steps.

Watch a short film about this stone and the remarkable history of this road.

Going to normandy this year?
If you're interested in stone circles, standing stones and megaliths in general check out this index. Directions and locations available on each page.
click here

Normandy Megalith The Allee Couverte de Vauville

Normandy Megalith Galerie Couverte de la Petite Roche

Normandy Megalith - Pierre au Rey

Normandy Megalith Pierre Butée

The Fairy Tree and the Devil of Rabey Wood

Normandy Megalith The High Man of Hacouville

Normandy Megalith - Allée couverte de Bretteville

Menhir de Champ Dolent Round Scape

The Devil Stone Bere Regis Dorset Megalith  

A Walking Guide to the Saint Just Alignments 

Markers - The Saint Just Alignments

Knowlton Church Landscape Painting Dorset

Hill forts around the Blackmore Vale Dorset

Roundscape of des Pierres Droites Standing Stone Alignments Brittany

Awakening the Ancestors digital sketches and video of Standing stone alignments in Brittany 

The eye of the lake l'étang de Quéhon

Paintings and Sketches

The way the path is stopped by stones from paintwalk

9 Barrow Down - Watercolour Sketch from paintwalk

Hillfort sunset watercolour sketch from paintwalk

Monteneuf Standing Stones Water Colour Landscape Brittany

The Avenue Alignments a Decalcomania Painting by Paintwalk

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