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From pre-Roman period to IXth century

The settlement since prehistoric times

Since prehistoric times, the Valley of the Verdon is populated, as evidenced by splinters of skillfully worked flints and skeletons uncovered by Dr. Blanc', with the antlers and teeth to bear, in a pool that has not yet been studied, on one of the foothills limestone of the Montdenier greenhouse, near the village of Châteauneuf-les-Moustiers. The Dr. G. Blanc and CL. Reynaud explored a narrow cave that plunges of 4 or 5 feet below ground, the territory of La Palud, South-West of the plateau of Pinssioule Pinsiuve on map IGN (alt.1 139 m) which dominates the Valley of Valoussiere (the val Orsière on the IGN map). They removed in 1949, four skeletons, which than a teenager of 17 or 18 years slightly hydrocephalic, pottery has enabled specialists in the Musée de Longchamp, in Marseille, to identify type lagozien (6 000 years BC). Nearby, a "village" comprising a dozen 'Fund of hut', remains of houses of peasants in the stone walls dry, 2 to 3 m long, still high from 30 to 40 cm, suggests a well after occupation, towards the end of the protohistoric period (a few hundred years BC).

Near Moustiers-Sainte-Marie

The territory of Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, clans property Clappier, a rock engraving represents a bison in a hollow on a limestone wall, former background of a cave whose flanks would be éboulés throughout the ages; the direction of the prehistoric Antiquities of Avignon has developed the shelter this engraving of the Magdalenian (9 000 to 12 000 years before our era) by building surrounding a small building. In the neighbourhood, under the direction of G. Pailliez, archaeologists of Aix surveyed 50 caves; a "rock shelter" gave (August 1967) many shards of flint and Hyena teeth dating from the Neolithic age (from (1000 to 2500 BC J.-C.2).))
Found at the area of Boulogne in La Palud, in 1906, on a skeleton oriented East-West, 0.50 or depth, a ring of leg of final iron (towards - 400 years) age was exposed to the Musée Dauphinois in December 1990, with a bibliography of H. Müller: bronze, round, firm, non-welded section oval with traces of hammering inside, and decorated with transverse fine lines; 105, length 18, thickness 11 mm diameter. There were seven other identical on a tibia.
Above the village of Chasteuil, at a place called La Peire written North of a large raised limestone bar, a dark gray rock is scratched a few earthy flows that descend into narrow strips. In the early 1980s, Ph. Hamlet studied on two of these flows, 2 or one of the other, two prehistoric paintings.
On the casting is, are painted, in particular, two deer sharp antlers, head to the right, and a less distinct deer, head to the left. on the West casting, where the figures are less clear, it appears that we can recognize two other deer. These are the first scenes representative of deers discovered in France, while they are common in Spain and the Portugal. The fact that they are listed according to arrays and on orange support confirms their authenticity for specialists.

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There are other treasures to discover...

Other archaeological treasures are ignored for the moment: coincidentally, Pascal Vaudou found, in 1991, on the floor of a cave in the ravine of Mortmain, still in La Palud, bones of animals and humans, including a skull cap, as well as coarse earthenware shards with degreaser coarse, including debris of a jar, a flat bottom, hemmed slightly outwards and a digitate edge edgedated the age of bronze medium or final. Aware of the interest of the site and its difficult access, its inventor has left behind its discovery. "Wish law enforcement research and the protection of the prehistoric heritage more financial resources and researchers: on some of the locations that we will describe disappeared shards, remnants of tegulae and grinding pieces seen in the past, and the tourist erosion" could still wreak havoc.
As to the genuine Palaeolithic shrine that are abundant in the lower Verdon gorges, caves extremely rich archaeological material picked up during excavations for more than thirty years is now presented to the public that it has of the village of Quinson, Tautavel, one of the meccas of prehistory.

The time of "oppida", rudimentary fortified villages

In the bronze age (1500-900 BC) fragile social life focuses, in certain circumstances, in rudimentary cities, "oppida". The oppidum, or village lin-tillé, can occupy an Escarpment with support on cliffs to peak, such as those of Trigance (Chastillon), of Saint-Julien to the southeast of the territory of Trigance (Alonthiver, Bagarry (Ruissassou) and needles (Sardou), or a hill surrounded by one or more speakers, such as Saint-Jurs (Castillon), or even a strikethrough spur, such as that of La Palud Châteauneuf-Rougon (the rock of the Capron). When either the natural defensive value of its location, the village strengthened its protection by one or more walls of dry stone, tops often 2 or 3 m its inhabitants could, either reside permanently or usually living in caves or huts, are seeking refuge in case of danger. Elsewhere the alternances of periods of peace and periods of invasions resulted in repeated abandonment of oppida, then their reoccupation.

Around 600 years av BC

In the vicinity of 600 BC, Greeks from Phocaea ' based on the Provençal Coast their "colony" of Massilia, the future Marseille. Interested in maritime trading, they establish counters on the coast (Antibes, Nice, Saint-Tropez...), merely to maintain trade relations with the Interior of the country, without trying to settle there.
But even before the arrival of the Phocians, existing exchanges between the region of Verdon on the one hand, the Greece and Asia minor on the other, as evidenced, Baudinard caves and 'the cave walled' clans of Montpezat (right bank of the Verdon, 8 km to the South of Riez), imported ceramics shards. In these same habitats, pottery in black varnish deposits and bands painted, and monochrome grey pottery, probably from coastal workshop, show that the Marseille traders then continued to use a commercial network that had existed since prehistory '.
Since 1000 years BC, the Celts, i.e. Indo-European peoples, have extended their domain to virtually the entire European continent, especially in Gaul. Tools and weapons of iron facilitate their implantation in people who still know only the bronze. They invade Provence at the beginning of the IV' century BC., and seize the cities that the Romans called Ligurian. Few in number, they are grafted easily on the indigenous tribes, they leave to remain but they assume the political leadership by creating small States celto-ligurians. The Provençal territory is inhabited by more than fifty tribes, half, in the High Alpine valleys, are barely affected. Others, more in the West, are grouped into confederations: the Cavares, established on the plains of Vaucluse (4 peoples); the Vocontii, the Ventoux in the Isère (5 peoples); the Salyes ', South of the Durance, between the Rhone and the Vat (17 peuplades7).

The tribes of the region

Our region is inhabited by a relatively large tribe, the QEII, and two smaller tribes, the Suetri and the Sadd. The tribe of the QEII has for capital the oppidum of A lebaece ("Alebaece Reiorum Ajelinarium" to the I"' century;) ""Reis Al olinaris"IV" century. "Arios" to 475; "Ride' in the 14th century;"Laugh"today"). Probably built on the Hill of Saint-Maxime, enclosed in a drystone wall which remain a few short sections, it dominates the plain which spreads at the confluence of the Auvestre and the Colostre.
The tribe territory covers approximately the current Canton of Valensole, Mezel, Riez, Moustiers, i.e. the basin middle and lower the ASSE and part of the Verdon way. There for natural limits to the West, the Durance; to the East, the ridge that goes from the Chabrières Glues to the gorges of the Verdon River by the Montdenier greenhouse (I 75(1 ni) and the Mourre de Chauler (I 931 ni).) To the South, the great plan of Canjuers form, with forest areas on the left bank of the lower Verdon, a deep no man's land, which remains today a dialect important limit: while to laugh, still spoken Alpine Provençal, AUPs, morons, Rians, the maritime Provence is in use.
Politically, the tribe of the QEII should be in one of the following situations:
•    Either it is more or less incorporated into the confederation of the Vocontii, which could explain the existence, South of Riez, on the side road of the agglomeration Forum Voconii and, in the Valley of Asse, to a place called Voconlium;
•    Or well it relates to confederation salyenne, who built his capital, on a plateau 3 km north of the city of Aix-en-Provence, plateau unknown name clans antiquity but called Entremont as early as the middle ages.
This solution would appear topographically more logical than the first: the country of Riez opens more instinctively toward the Mediterranean South, Aix, or even the lower Valley of Argens. It is proposed by Guy Barruol as a working hypothesis, as well as j. Zareba.
As to the other two peoples, Sue - sorted and Sentii, who for capitals, respectively, Ducelia (Castellane) and Sanilium (Sandra), they retain their political independence. The primitive habitat of Sanitium amounts to the location, the current Senez either this "hairy caslrum" cited in the middle ages as the "caslrum Seneciom" twin. Ducelia is an oppidum on one or other of the hills that surround Castellane, perhaps on the called Rocky top bar of the Fine balm, which dominates the branch line along the Castellane-Moustiers, of the road up to Brayal. An archaeologist amateur, Jacques Félisat, are practiced a few surveys in the summers from 1956 to 1968. According to a note by Dr. Gabriel Gillyboeuf, collected pieces were tips of arrows, polishers and Flint scrapers. a polished; stone axe splinters of bone (with traces of polishing or cutting); bronze spikes; various pottery fragments, whose sigillata pottery; the polls also showed the existence of shelter and dry stone walls. As the oppidum Sinaca of the high middle age, he stood on the Hill known as today the Signal; at its foot, the area of Cimira or Cimiranis (all or part of the little plain that we call Plan de Castellane) will host a Paleochristian Cathedral which will succeed the parish church Sainte-Marie (Notre-Dame - Plan II).

The Baou, border of two Roman province: the Narbonaise and the Alpes Maritimes

When, after crossing the Strait of Gibraltar, the Spain and the Pyrenees, the Carthaginians arrive to North Africa (218 BC) led by Hannibal to fight the Roman armies at home, they cross the Rhône probably to. the height of Orange, and take the road of the Alps by the Isère Valley. It is unlikely that elements of their army back the Verdon Valley. However, near the village of Thorame, a small locality named Camp of Annibal, while between ovens and Saint-Dalmas, a large stone is called the Table of Hannibal.
Against the Carthaginians, the Marseillais show faithful Allied of the Romans, with their port to the fleet of Scipio and providing his troops guides and information. Also when sixty years after, the tribes of the Oxybians and the Deceates threaten their counters from Nice and Antibes (151 av. J.-C.), then when the Salyes combine with the Vocontii and the Allobroges (125 BC) to try to destroy their city, the Marseillais call they the Romans using. They intervene immediately; but, after their victory, if they just the first time to keep the lands surrounding the plain of La Brague, second, they intend to maintain the link by land, the Alps to the Pyrenees, with their troops who come to settle in Spain, and decide to put an end to the turbulence of celto-Ligurian peoples and their allies. The consul Caius Sextius Calvinus attacked the capital of the Salyes, that he stormed after bombardment by catapults (123 BC J.-C.), breaks gods, rase the city, sells has the auction its population.) The following year, in the plain, at the foot of Entremont, he creates Aquae Sectioe Saluviorum, the future Aix-en-Provence, first of the cities that the Romans based in Gaul.
After defeating the Vocontii, the Allobroges and the Arverni during a war hard and long, Rome shall form with the conquered regions the transalpine province that was later called "Gallia narbonensis", the name of its capital, Narbonne (founded in 118 BC). The province includes the fedeies (Marseille and its counters, the Vocontii...) and subject peoples including the QEII.
During a Roman civil war, Marseille remains faithful to the Senate and takes the head legal, Pompey's Party. But this is Jules Cesar that the door em, besieging the town by his lieutenants (49 av. J.-C.), removes it his empire and destroyed its political role.) Auguste gives the province its final status (27 BC). Celtic States, respected in all Gaul, are shared in Italian cities in Gallia narbonensis. The territory that would have covered the old salyens State is divided into four colonies: Aix, Saint-Rémy, worthy and Riez. It's the latter that is the territory of the current villages of Moustiers, La Palud, Rougon, Aiguines and Trigance. Each colony is given freely.
The Suetri (around Castellane), the niullati (without studs clans the upper Valley of the Cove), the Bodiontici (around Digne) and various small tribes of the current departemements of Provence and Alpes-Maritimes, are the latest submitted due to their difficult access in the mountain. The conquest of the country ends (11 BC BC) a trophy is high at La Turbie (year 8 a.d.) to commemorate the event. With their domain, Auguste creates a new province, very limited: the "Alpes-Maritimes". It includes the region of the current cities of Nice, Vence, Castellane, Sandra and worthy. Cimiez is the capital.
In the region, the border that separates the Narbonne des Alpes-Maritimes, follows the Valley of the Baou, torrent that flows on the right bank of the Verdon and empties into the River at a place called the Sublime Point by tourist guides.
At the time where the Empire crumble, the Church, replacing him, will adopt his administration executives. She calquera on this boundary line of separation between the dioceses of Riez and Senez, line which will more or less fluctuate during periods of unrest, but that will confirm in 1111 Pope Paschal II, specifying that it passes by the oppidum of Rougon13, i.e. on the right bank of the Baou.

The Roman towns of Riez and Castellane United by the Roman road from Moustiers and Rougon

"At the moment,"Roman peace"opens a period which particularly pleased until the middle of the ut" century, will hasten the romanization of the country. Created from scratch, the Roman city of the QEII extends in the plain, at the foot of the ancient oppidum of Saint-Maxime, where the inhabitants return to the troubled times of the early middle ages.
Similarly to Castellane, between the foot of the oppidum of Ducelia and the Verdon River, the Roman town was established in the widest part of the little plain to the West of which arise salty sources which give its name to the new settlement, Seine. Later, the inhabitants (after, no doubt, have sought refuge), them too, on the ancient oppidum will be gathered away from the Roc and the new stately Peira. Castellana, to refer to the Plan de Castellane, they will retain the old name: "Salinismn in plano. And nowadays, the western end of the district is still called the Sadh.
The location of Salinae has unfortunately not known of scientific excavations. The only chance revealed in the 19th. century, an amphitheatre and the inscriptionsli. Among these, some have disappeared, others evoke only the fate of a few notable. Thus Matuconius Severus said, on the grave of his two sons, they were of decurions (municipal magistrates). Flavius Sabinus, qualified in 181 duumvir (magistrate at the top of the municipal, mandated hierarchy for five years) of Castellane and Frejus, possessed as a result of important goods in both cities; It is also said SOE of the province of Alpes-Maritimes, that he had received the supreme honour of representing Salinae Provincial Assembly where, while associating itself with the imperial cult, he was the official spokesman of his countrymen with the Governors ".

New network

Joining its economic and political usefulness to its strategic value, a network of routes promotes cultural and commercial exchanges. The Romans begin by using the pathways that existed before their arrival: pre-historic tracks and paths through which Marseille had assured their trade. A road passes at each end of the gorges du Verdon. Year 3, the first, linking the lower Valley of Argens riez Draguignan and the former village of classrooms, crosses the Verdon at the height of the Garruby bridge that drowned St. Croix Lake. The other, starting from Cagnes (where it branches on the great road Nice Tarascon-Perpignan), passes through Vence to serve the small Alpine capitals: Castellane, Senez, Digne, Sisteron. under Caracala, Emperor from 211 to 217, the Governor of Alpes-Maritimes, julius Honoratus, makes restore. The road which connects Riez in Aix is attested in 208-210.

"The Roman road"

Called today "the Roman way", a path has played a crucial role in the history of the right bank of the Gorge connecting the ancient Roman cities of Riez and Castellane. It passes at the foot of the oppidum of Castillon, crosses the limestone plateau which stretches over Monsliers: sites that there were already known, were successively added, there are a dozen of years, ancient habitat updated in the Valley of Bousquet, near the farm of Bex, and habitat pre and Protohistoric close to the pass separating the ravines of Notre-Dame and the Riou.
The track then borrows the Valley of the Valonge up to Châteauneuf it bypasses; It crosses the Baou to the Ponsonnet, can the Praoux ravine on the edge of Chauvet. continues to bench mountain by the tops of Rougon (along the small plain of Suech), the terroirs of Chastel de Villars-Brandis (two common attached to Castellane in 1973 and 1964) and the hamlet of glue. No mileage, pavement or other brand not dated the construction. But it is mentioned in a deed of 1045 about '. As lack of iron tools, it has practically no pioneered path in the mountains by the end of late Antiquity until the 11th century, we can actually believe earlier at this time... In the middle of the 19th century still, amended its route in places at the discretion of the owners and torrents, it will remain the sole channel of communication between Mousliers and Castellane, under the administrative name of "Provincial road No. IO".
The network is completed by a group of tracks used by herds in transhumance and hawkers: the "draillese". One from Draguignan to Castellane via Comps; an another Les Salles in Senez, Moustiers and Levens. On the first connects a draille of lesser importance, reaching Rougon spanning the Verdon at the Tusset, there where a bridge, ancient and splendid, still stands but has nothing of Roman.

In summary

This set of communication channels will not vary until the modernisation of the ro-ro system initiated in the 18th ' century. It is he that will borrow the merchants but also troops from Italy or Spain. It is thanks to him that in the x"century the inhabitants driven out of Central Provence by the Saracen bands, will seek refuge in Haute-Provence and then conversely, a part of the mountain population will descend to the plain, when two turf wars resulting from the succession of Queen Jeanne will cause economic crisis and famine. It is through him that chemineront from "poppies" rent their arms in Basse-Provence for the season, as dogmas Waldensians and Calvinist preachers.
The Church replaces the Roman empire
The name common provincia becomes the proper name of the country
After this long period of peace and prosperity, the Provence feels the evolution of the Roman Empire, that internal political anarchy and the pressure of the Germanic barbarians on the frontiers will precipitate. In 371, an administrative reorganization resulted in the division of Gallia narbonensis in three provinces:
•    First Narbonne, on the right bank of the Rhône, with Narbonne as its capital;
•    The Viennese on the left bank, with the cities of Avignon, Vienna, Arles and Marseille, and where Arles wasted no time a delight in Vienna the role of capital;
•    Second Narbonne which, with Aix for capital, includes the territory between the Vienna and the province of Alpes-Maritimes, in particular that of the QEII.

Decadence of the Roman empire

The Roman Empire eventually split (395). Honorius became head of the Western Empire, which has its capital first at Trier (Rhineland-Palatinate) and then in Arles from 418; Arcadius of the Eastern Empire, which has seat Constantinople.At Taloire, down the neck of Robion, it would have found (June 28, 1787), also two rings of gold, whose one adorned with an onyx was a victory in a Quadriga, 34 currencies gold of Honorius and arcadius, hidden under a rock. Which therefore could lose or conceal the flank of a mountain from the gorges of the Verdon these coins with the effigy of the two emperors? Under what circumstances?
Christianity has no doubt early beginnings in Provence; It's Nice that he reached the Valley of the Var and the Alpine regions. But if the Church is organized fast enough, its location deep in the population progresses rather slowly. In the IVth and V centuries, a number of bishoprics were put in place, including the list of bishops who participate in the regional councils, pretty much gives the date of Foundation: Digne in 374, Riez in 434, Castellane and Thorame in 439, with Claudius and Severianus, Glandève bishops at the beginning of the 500 years... When, on the list of the Council of Agde (506), figure a Marcellus Bishop of Senez, the representatives of Castellane and Thorame are most mentioned; It was deduced that it is the fusion of these heavens bishoprics was born to Sandra at the beginning of the 6th century. While the secular Church structure, the monastic life was born and flourished with the Foundation by Saint Honorat of an Abbey on the smaller of the two islands of Lérins (c. 410), and Saint-Cassien, of the Abbey of St. Victor, near the port of Marseilles (c. 416).

Fall of the Roman empire

At the time when the Roman Empire collapsed, the Church, which replaces him, distinguishes more clearly than two provinces: first Narbonne and the Viennese, second Narbonne merged with the latter. In 450, last reorganization enacted regularly before the fall of the Western Empire: Pope Leo placed under the authority of the siege of Vienna the dioceses of Valence, Grenoble, Geneva and Tarentaise. It brings together the rest of the Viennese, the former second Narbonne and the Alpes-Maritimes under the jurisdiction of Arles. This development responds to two different political dominations:
•    In Vienna are connected the churches of the regions under the power of the barbarians;
•    In Arles, those who obey still Imperial officials, including the diocese of Riez, with among others the territories of Moustiers, Aiguines, Trigance, Saint-Jurs, La Palud and Rougon, and the diocese of Senez, with in particular the territories of Castellane, Demandolx, Eoulx, Robion, Taloire, Villars-Brandis and Chasteuil.
First province of Gaul conquered by the Romans, the Provence remains the last remains of their administration. In Gaul invaded by barbarians, she became the bastion of the latinity, with Arles as "Prefecture of the Gauls". The Western Roman Empire being crumbled in turn (476), it will know the domination of Visigoths, South of the Durance, the Burgundians in the North... After the defeat of the Visigoths by the Frankish king Clovis (507), the Ostrogoths will override them... A little later, the Franks annexeront the Burgundian Kingdom and then will be transfer South of the Provençal territory by the Ostrogothic king, for price of their clans neutrality the conflict between the Emperor of the East. therefore incorporated into the Frankish Kingdom, the Provence will be, for the first time, submitted to Nordic monarchs, the Merovingians, far from Roman traditions (536). She will enter a period of five centuries poorly explored, due to lack of direct sources, and will be known only through written testimonies that are foreign to him. Ironically, it is at the moment where seem to disappear last Latin survivals that the common name "provincia" will become the proper name of the country.

The hordes of Charles Martel ravage Provence (737)

The fratricidal struggles that tear the Merovingian dynasty soon translates dismember Provence, conflicts and invasions. Economic activity declines in the cities and in the countryside. We speak little of villae but of casiella fortified. Some aristocratic families strive to maintain a Christianized Gallo-Roman tradition, while senior officials, such as jayaraj Mummolus, son of the count of Auxerre, represent a royal power often theoretical and distant. After stopped the advance of the Lombards, formidable masters barbarians of the Italy from the North, from where they planned to invade Gaul from Mount Geneva, this defeated patrice their Saxon allies, shortly before 573, at Estoublon, in the Valley of the Asse.They had compiled their camp, spreading from there into the nearby cities and villages, abducting the loot, ravaging the countryside and taking prisoners.
The jayaraj soon arrogate the sovereign prerogatives. The quasi-independence says patrice Moronte Provence by striking its own currency, is dangerous for the unity of the Frankish Kingdom at the moment where, although their expansion into North Africa and Spain a start to reflux after their defeat near Poitiers (732 or 733), Arabs invaded the South of Gaul, juice-to Nîmes. Preferring their demi-civilisation to unsophisticated manners Francs, patrice Moronte "founded a multi - confessional State in which Arabs, if not of friends, are considered as allies.

The response of Charles Martel

The counter-attack of Charles Martel does not wait, his hordes sweep in the Valley of the Rhône in 737, and massacred the population of Avignon. At his appeal, the Lombards cross the Alps to destroy Cimiez. It will take several expeditions, to which he devoted his last years, to secure unfortunate Provence who, according to some historians, would have suffered more damage and suffering of his is that of all the previous invasions.
At the exit of the gorges du Verdon, right bank, the District of Vals ("Vals" on the IGN map) ends, to the South by a ledge at 1213 m. Along the edge of this bar, to its Summit, there is still a row of huts, likely remains of the Villa of Orborio Fund. While almost all the possessions of l'Abbaye Saint-Victor de Marseille prior to the Carolingian era, Fr. Paguy, taken over by Solome, Moustiers historian, then by j..-M. Feraud, explains that patrice Stutener, Governor of Marseille, reportedly abducted force this village to the Abbey to be save an asylum. But Albanes shows that it is an official of Pepin the short, called Arding the Alaman, which would have captured it and confided in benefit to his faithful Ahmed. Féraud adds: 'The prayer of St. Mauront, Bishop of Marseille and Abbot of Saint-Victor, the Emperor Charlemagne made him return to the monastery, around the year 774 or 800, according to father Pagy' presence in 780 to a Maurontus to head the Church in Marseilles and the Abbey remains unlikely)... "Would it be on this occasion that Charlemagne who, in the diocese of Riez, had also the Church Saint-Apollinaire of Puimoisson, gave it to the Bishop of Valencia"?... In the 9th and 10th s., Provence will be again bloodied and sacked during the troubles resulting from the disintegration of the Carolingian empire and then the installation of the Saracens in the Fraxinalum.

E broke the Church in economic and political life

The fate of populations living on the properties of the Church in Marseilles, in the Middle Valley of the Verdon (813-814)
One of the essential phenomena which characterized the period of late Antiquity and the Merovingians, is "a transfer from cities to the countryside, where large landowners now reside at length of years". On the occasion of this major evolution, the Church broke into economic life and political. The many and sometimes considerable donations she has collected (cash and especially in nature, specifically areas and their slaves) have made it the main beneficiary of this transfer of wealth. The Verdon region warned of evidence. Also although the bishopric of Marseille itself that the Abbey Saint Victor is rich properties inherit. Lack of previous documents, we do know that as from the IX then of the X century, when Bishop Wadalde will conduct an inventory of the possessions of his Church and will make State, or polyptych (813-814). And when following a decline over four centuries, the Abbey will enter the reconstitution of its time: the monks will then record carefully records called cartularies, "donations-refunds" that they will benefit.
Meanwhile, the decline of the Provençal Church begins and worsens throughout the Merovingian. Not only because of the invasions and looting. No doubt - this property to guard against barbarian incursions that the Bishop of Senez is building a castle on a so-called height today rock of le Castellet: "it was a kind of Castle, built in stone size, as well as a weapon which was adjacent to him"and the walls which had been performed of splays;". For the same reason that abandoning the Salinae Roman city, which is not tenable in the plain but where yet stands in their parish church, the Saliniens overhaul the oppidum of Sinaca; and what it the example of their Bishop, the inhabitants of Riez will again seek refuge on the Hill Saint-Maxime.


In the current municipality of Puimoisson in the Valley of Lamas (which will retain its name until the XV' century in the form of Lam), Charlemagne has donated to the diocese of Valencia of a church in which, four centuries earlier, Maximus, Bishop of Riez, would have taught theology at blessed Apollinaris. Then its location, it seems, proportions simpleton otherwise important, a first building, a Palace, amounted to the v' century, at the same time that the Group Bishop of Riez, or shortly after. Partly demolished in the high middle ages, restored and placed under the patronage of saint Apollinaire by the Abbey of Saint-third of Satin (Drôme), he is transformed by the Hospital of Puimoisson in fortified church. It has never recovered from the carnage suffered during the wars of religion. A listed historical monument.
It is sure that the growing insecurity of roads is not sufficient to explain the absence, during this time, important regional Council. Around 580, a text of Gregory of Tours recounts how, under the Théodorus Bishop of Marseille, the clergy of the Cathedral and the Abbot of Saint-Victor loot the patrimony of the Church. And if the bishops make more national councils which also has space gradually, it is firstly due to lack of pastoral zeal. "The decadence of the clergy is great: it has become an instrument in the hands of the powerful, who are assigned their followers or to maintain extended vacation to collect income from huge property" ".
From elsewhere in the middle of the vil' century, the list of bishops stops to do resume that sometimes several centuries after. The diocese of Senez is one of those where the disruption occurs soon (after 614) to extend the later (up to 994), be a gap of 380 years. "The decadence of the throne inevitably led to the altar, which was even more vulnerable that his physical power had increased at the expense of his spiritual strength". As far as the dispossession, this moral collapse explains the disappearance of the community of Saint-Victor.

Carolingian polyptychs

Carolingian polyptychs were designed inventory of temporal of religious institutions. The most famous, that of the Abbey of Saint Germain des Prés, is drawn up between 806 and 829. The Polyptych of the Marseille Church date from the same era (813-814). It is the oldest parchment kept in original in the archives of Provence. The Bishop Wadalde, that made him write, simultaneously with its church property, administers heritage of the Abbey of St. Victor, that it has annexed to the episcopal area. It consists of 13 groups of properties: 10 villae (here the word villa has lost the meaning of vast agricultural area, that gave him the Romans, it now means a more or less large set of holdings, and probably has the sense of territory) and 3 agri (P ager seems a large villa). Each of these 13 groups of properties borrows the toponym of the oppidum which it covers a part of the territory. Four of them ranged along the medium Valley of the Verdon: the villa Vergonis, Vergons), the villa or ager Sinaca (Castellane), villa Tregenlia (hotel), and the villa Rovagonis (Rougon).
All of the 13 groups that form the domain of the Church de Marseille represents a total of 266 tenures granted subject to royalties, including about 220 collogne or farms, some involving several tenures in the said place that serves as a support; In addition 20 sheep pens and 8 pastures. The polyptych says nothing about the environment in which integrate these farms, nor on what is happening beyond their limits. It is likely that large unoccupied areas surround them, especially in Haute-Provence. Of the mountains, covered with more or less thick forests, should be pretty much without stand (like today, moreover, in any case without a master, and perhaps, even without a name.)

Our investigations and conclusions

We are no better informed about the area of tenures, but we know, does not fulfil only the territorial framework of the oppidum to them, they are faced by other properties. For example, in the villa of Rougon, investigators attribute specifically to Saint-Victor (this is also the only case) the condamines and other lands. In the villa of Vergons, they indicate that "men of the County [married] women to us"; the County (of Arles?) therefore has a nearby field. Or they list some tenures which the Church de Marseille has that third share; one-third of income and not from the Earth, since it is not question of their inhabitants; These tenures belong therefore to others.
Finally the investigators specify the quality and the amount of royalties owed: a franchise in nature, a tribute in money, a right to pasture in money or in kind; It is most often either one or two sheep (a sheep is generally estimated at one denarius) or one or two funds in cash, or sometimes a pork, lamb or piglet, a few hens, chickens or eggs, rarely grain.
Grabbing territory by large farms should not obscure the permanence of small-scale mining, but Sinaca in Trigance in Rougon as elsewhere, we ignore everything from the independent, large or small, landowners who share the rest of the terroir of the oppidum. An exception, however, the family of Mayeul; inventory that it does draw when he became Abbot of Cluny, tells us that his father, Foulques de Valensole, had in the 9th century of land in Eoulx, as well as to Saint-Thyrs, and others, more extensive, in the dioceses of Riez and Fréjus... We meet that after the year 1000 the last des-descendants of some of these alleutiers, the CARTULARY of Saint-Victor mentioned them during trial that will make them the Abbey.

The population of these areas

The population of the 13 areas of the polyptych rises to almost 1000 inhabitants, a hundred is "search" (ad requirendum). The investigators mention their names, by tenure, their ties of kinship, their social or professional qualification, as well as the age and sex of their children. They cite first the Manager of operations, that it has the status of colon (colonus), legally free principle, with added (accola), legally free but attached to the ground, slave (mancipium), or sometimes the non defini38 status widow. The present adult population includes 138 couples, as well as 24 mothers and fathers isolated with custody of their children. The population "to look" consists of 64 ' Vo adults, of whom 6 couples. of these, 4 were a foreign property to the spouse, and 3 took their children. Also 22 fathers or mothers isolated, accompanied by their children have fled.
Present or escaped, this category of 17 fathers and 29 mothers alone with their children, represents more than 24% of all the families mentioned in the document. By its importance, it shows the precariousness of the nonfree married outside their original domain (and that of their offspring), and the proximity of the end of a world.
Certainly, when a non-free married elsewhere, the master canned the property; He does, after all, that "lend". But he loses the fruit of its activity. Also negotiating compensation with the master of the domain which has, on the contrary, one additional labor: the bondsman and the unborn child. The polyptych reading suggests that the compromise between the respective Masters has resulted only in a temporary loan of the bondsman or the serve: for a few years, or during certain periods of the year; their offspring is never described, it checked for sharing either as it belongs to the other domain. Fathers and mothers fled the property with their children, have gone probably find their spouse slaved to another master, but they have not joined him necessarily in this master.

The Ager or villa Sinaca (Castellane)

Areas that have inventoried the investigators, this is the third by the importance both the number of its inhabitants (84) and in terms of her outfits (22). It borrows the name of the old oppidum which is called to the high middle age Sinaca then Seine. Rounded Hill that closes the northern end of the map of Castellane, still bears some traces of an enclosure of stones dry, visible, especially on its northeast flank above the crossroads of the roads of Digne and Saint-andre-les-alpes at its Summit. The name of this Hill will become Segna as well in the administrative texts of XV th century than among local historians Laurensi and fat-Bourguet in the 18th and 19th centuries ", finally Signal of our days.
The toponym covers an area that is only a report with the possessions of the Church de Marseille and only serves to locate them. They consist of seventeen collogne (Holdings), that the document accurately describes:
•    Colonge ad Ms (literally, des Ormes): managed by added it Fulcomares to whom his wife Vuteria gave seven children, including two boys and a girl. they have a sheep as a grazing right;
•    Colonge ad Fabricas (literally, clans the vicinity of Des Forges): A first tenure, led by Dominicus slave, with his wife Judy; five children including a great son and another at school (an Episcopal School in Digne? Could this be the reason why this family is not subject to a royalty?) ;
•    A second tenure, governed by the Vualdeberg slave, with wife Savina; three young people and two other children; need a sheep as a grazing right; There are also the Maira widow, unmarried daughter Luceria, and son Lucerius with his wife Savilde, while two other large wires are to be found;
•    Colonge in Eleuicis, today Eoulx: his head, colon Romulus, with his wife Maint. have with them a young man, a young girl and three other children, while three other grown children, two girls and a boy, are to be found; This operation seems more imposed in nature: a sense consists of a pig, two hens, ten chickens, 40 eggs, more a right to pasture in the form of a sheep;
•    Bais in colonge: managed by colon Tudomaris and his wife Montana with three young men and two young girls, more a girl; a sheep for right to pasture, and the franchise;
•    Colonge in Lancione: managed by a settler woman, Rustica, which girls Juannia and Rentrudis were married both to a stranger to the field man, therefore not appointed; they have two boys and two girls; cash, a tribute of a denarius, and a right to pasture of a denarius also; franchise in nature;
•    Colonge in Cassaneto: cultivated by the Teobertus colon and his wife Natalia. have with them two young children, but their big three sons, including the Roofredus cleric, are to be found; a right of a sheep grazing;
•    Colonge in Fabricas (literally: in the Forges): on a first tenure, the serf Juvinianus and his wife Genesia, with five young children; a right to pasture two Denarii; A second tenure, managed by the Lautrudis widow, who has two young children; a sheep for grazing right;
•    Colonge in Bagarris (today Bagarris or Bagarry): on a first tenure, the widow Deidona lives with his old daughter of ten years, and two young daughters. his son is to be sought; a sheep for grazing right; the cens and the tribute in kind; On a second tenure, colon Aurilius and wife Magna have two young children. a sheep for grazing right; A third tenure, uninhabited (aps/a), is nevertheless grown, probably by the couple who above, because it is imposed, also of a sheep for grazing right;
•    Colonge in Mairolcu: cultivated by Rodulfus slave and his wife Fromuldis; two girls, ages eight and ten, and a great son. a right of grazing ewes;
•    Colonge in Fontelaigas: first tenure: managed by Maginea, whose husband, stranger to the field, is not named; have a ten year old girl; their son is to be sought; royalty unspecified; Second tenure: although not inhabited, must be cultivated, perhaps by the previous family; a sheep as a grazing right;
•    Colonge in Bugiata: not inhabited;
•    Colonge in Dimicinis: not inhabited;
•    Colonge inJuncariolas: not inhabited;
•    Colonge in Artigenis: not inhabited;
•    Colonge in Sugione: not inhabited;
•    Colonge in Leboraria: not inhabited;
•    Colonge in Fagito (literally, the beech wood): not inhabited.
Probably know we situate the colonge "in Bagarris"; for in Eleuicis", p.. Poly translated the toponym by Eoulxu; but the others?

The villa of Trigance

In the lower Valley of the Jabroe, the Church of Marseille has a set of 10 farms scattered over 8 (9 collogne and 1 ALP) so-called places of the territory of the oppidum whose name it bears. Southwest of the village today in which he left his original name in heritage, the old oppidum is now called Chnslillan. Mountain which he OCCUpC Summit (alt. 1 199 m) dominates in drop, to the Southwest, a Valley limiting the military camp of Canjuers, and the current northeast farm Saint-Maries (the site of which is follow a church Saint-Maxime given to the Abbey of St. Victor in 1056, a farm house of the Templars, and then a strong House raised by the hospital after), to 1312, most authority they have transferred the Templar property. Building on the Northwest-oriented Cliff (Southeast, an enclosure in an arc encloses the Summit (approx. 60 x 100 m) behind two (maybe three) dry stone walls, average module; a chicane) simple shift of the two walls that frame the entrance defended access to the inland area.


The population that identified the investigators in the villa of Trigance, consists of 5 couples, with 6 children and 4 young people. In fact, it is more important, simpleton clans 4 farms, the Church has that of the third share, third of the income, and not from the Earth, and peasants are not listed because they do not belong to him.
•    Colonge Rovoredo: On a first tenure, vital colon and his wife Audoberta live with their girls heaven, Dominica and Maurentia, married to a foreign domain man; they are themselves, in addition to a married daughter also to a stranger, 3 children and.5 young people. As of the census, they must 1 pork, milk, 1 sheep, 5 chickens, 2 hens and 40 eggs. A second tenure, uninhabited, should not be cultivated either since it is not imposed.
•    Colonge in Greseto: colon Desiclerius and his wife Paula have two children; they have a meaning similar to that of the Rovoredo colonge.
•    Colonge in Plevra: uninhabited, untaxed.
•    Colonge ad illo Calaone: uninhabited, untaxed.
•    Colonge in Mairolis: uninhabited, untaxed.
•    Colonge in Mainosco: third part;
•    In Alpine Mainosco: third part.
•    Colonge in Lemecca Massiliensi: third part.
•    Colonge in Vultonas: third part.

The villa of Rougon

The smallest and the least populated of the sets identified by the polyptych. The villa covers only a part of the vast rele vant of the oppidum of Rougon13, which it borrows the toponym, and which has limits, to the South, the gorges du Verdon, in the North, a large bar mountains whose two summits culminate in nearly 2,000 or: the Chiran and Moure de Chanier. Today the municipalities of Rougon, of La Palud-sur-Verdon, of Chitteauneuf-les-Moustiers (administratively attached to La Palud) and of Levens (attached to Majastres) share this scope.
Looking for traces of the operations constituting the villa, we first faced the polyptych text as it was edited in the XI th century with the original parchment, then consulted the archives, noted the evolution of place names, traversed the mountain, questioned the shepherds. This work has helped to locate the named properties:

•    Colonge in Carnillas: name hard to decipher on the parchment because a tear; in fact, one reads usually in Carnillas or Carmillas; But however propose to locate this colonge at the foot of Counillies, at the location of the current farm, the Allaves, the territory of Châteauneuf (presence of debris of tegulae or Roman tiles). It is the only exploitation of the villa where a resident is present and named: a young girl called Maguildis. Five Yahoos from the colonge are to search for, which we also have the name. Five others are to search: "children of Scolo", without further specification on their pere4 ".
•    Colonge in Bagella: easily identifies with the La Palud area which has kept the toponym of Bagelle, on the right bank of the stream of le Brusquet but which amount then above on the side of Baker mountain, would have included maybe the area known today as the Bourbon with its upper limit, the refuge habitat of Counier which still remains.
•    Colonge in Dögone: it was to occupy the lower Valley of the Baou, riding on the current municipalities of La Palud and Rougon. before its confluence with the Verdon, this torrent expands its banks to form a fertile Bowl, that closes it downstream by a kind of Glue. A mountain overlooks drop this due and the Verdon, and steep the Bowl: Rocas dau Due. Traces of habitat at the top.
•    In sheepfolds Corcione: district which in La Palud, has retained the name of Courchon, extends from the foot of the ancient oppidum of Rougon to the left bank of the Brusquet; Perhaps the toponym also covered the plain of Girard said today plateau, where there are still remains of walls impossible to date: remains of sheep pens?
•    "In Taverna, we have the third part of this colonge", the Publisher of the document read. No locality, the region, has a name that may derive from Taverna. On the other hand, a more careful reading of the original manuscript suggests that this sentence, isolated by the editor is actually only the logical continuation of the previous. Indeed, the sign (a cross in the centre of an O), on parchment, separating one sentence of another does not exist between the previous (bergeries in Corcione) and this (in Taverna), but lies before first use and at the end of the second. "The two combined fragments give:" Bergeries de Courchon: we have the third part of the House "' of this colonge". Thus reconstituted, this sentence has two merits: it explains why the document does not name the operators of Courchon: the Church of Marseilles does not own the bergeries but only one-third of their income; It also explains the tax situation in the villa: two described below pastures (in Nitras and in Agneglo) must provide each a sheep; therefore one or more occupants of the villa use and accordingly pay du pasquier; However only the presence of a teenager or young girl is reported. but everything becomes clear if the sheep-folds of Courchon always raise herds.
•    in na...: the name of the first pasture, very difficult to decipher, it also reads: in Nitras. After agglutination of of and adding the suffix acium, it gave us the toponym Deneyras, current district of the town of Rougon. It may be that the 9th century, larger even than our Deneyras Nitras, has incorporated the neighbourhoods we call Sine and Peycal (Peycard on the map). This large territory is delimited by two natural borders, indeed two gullies than others: Praoux to the West, Peycal in the East.
•    in Agneglo: the second pasture should extend a long territory of more than 4 km, bounded on the Northwest and Southeast by a mountain and a ravine the names present from probably the old toponym which: sank Lamb (1,135 m), on the old town of Levens (right bank of the Estoublaisse, tributary of the Asse); the ravine of the Lamb, tributary of the Baou Acco, the territory of Chauvet (hamlet of Châteauneuf). The Meadow perhaps incorporated the current quarter Saint-Barnabé, which remain the Church in ruins and the ancient cemetery of Levens, who the flanks (abundant presence of tegulae debris).
•    Condamines and lands of St. Victor: the investigators specify: "(Nous avons la tierce part de ces condamines et de ces terres de Saint-Victor')". They indicate no name that would locate this reserve and the land of the Abbey. But the only refund donation that it benefit the territory of the villa is, in 1056, the Church Saint-Maxime, which gave its name to the neighborhood Saint-sector. We can therefore assume that the properties that, for once, the survey assigns expressly in Saint-Victor, were around.


Thus the villa of Rougon is more inhabited than what a quick reading of the document could suggest: the Courchon sheep pens and in two pastures, shepherds care for and keep herds, in Saint-Victor conclamines, still in culture, provide income. Besides other areas share the territory of the oppidum; those that dominate the ancient or medieval habitats Meyreste and Puy des Charmes; one also which will guess at the location of the farm of the Clue, where each labour traced on the surface of fragments of tegulae.

The federal regime: a social and economic system shaken

Similar analysis of each of the 13 sets of properties by men familiar with the geography and local toponymy, would obviously some additional light on a 9th century Provençal poorly known. It is still surprising that on the thousand people identified by investigators, one hundred are on the run; than 266 houses or farms described, 114 are empty and abandoned, including 7 on Sinaca, 4 out of 10 in Trigance, 22 3 out of 7 in Rougon. The cause of these escapes and these wildfires has attributed to a deep demographic and economic crisis. Fair but partial explanation. First, it is a crisis of civilization.
Attitudes have changed, the values that led to the social system and the economic system of the federal regime are being undermined. Among the 100 people "to look" that list investigators, many young people - including 10 Sinaca - but the fathers or mothers of families, often with their children; If each and others fled their home field, isn't likely to join a new master, but to seek refuge and freedom in the mountains: in an hour or two of market, they find the forest for their pigs, free depaissance for their sheep, some Valley for their garden, the caves for shelter or dry stones to their cabin. With independence. Because, precisely in the ecclesiastical possessions first, master accounted for justice and has all power to judge its tenants, even free, but lack of means of coercion, it remains unable to bring its fugitive peasants.

In the 10th century

This mutation will result, in the X th century by an important movement of emancipation of serfs in Provence and the development of the small property ".
To along one hundred fifty years following the inventory of the goods of the Church in Marseilles, the fate of the population will still worsen, first because of the wars between heirs Carolingian, then due to the deadly between Burgundian and Provencal nobles rivalries, due finally to bloody brash looting. In 923, or 110 years after Wadalde, his successor on the episcopal see of Marseille seeks of the Bishop of Arles of new domains; Properties "where him and the son of his Church of the one and the other sex, serfs or free, drew their livelihood", he explains, have been abandoned by those who, ceasing to grow to escape from the Saracens, had sought refuge with him.And as the polyptych located in Haute-Provence and Eastern Provence the most numerous areas (8 of 13) and the most populous, it is therefore the devastation of these lands that caused the depletion of the resources of the Bishop.
Despite the inhumane conditions in which struggled at the beginning of the IX s., workers areas, and aggravation that they will suffer during the following decades, the survivors will be still in sufficient numbers to provide mass peasant at the time of the reoccupation progressive land, around the year 1000, with the survivors of the great areas of Roman or Carolingian, and those of the secondary centres of settlement of protohistoric tradition.
The villa of Rougon provides a probative illustration of this mutation: while Wadalde investigators not only mention is a mere presence, that of a young girl, the peasants are therein in such numbers, a century and a half later, to organize them into a new form of social life, the Lords will have to erect four churches (n.-d. La PaludSaint-Christophe of Rougon, Saint-Pierre of Chandran and Saint-Barnabé de Levens) then four castles: the Chauvet Chastelas, Château Neuf des Barris, Rougon probably on the so-called bar of the Catalans, and Levens, above the ravine of the Estoudeou.
Rivalries between Burgundian Provence and Roman law.

The son of the count of Arles and their companions drove them from Freinet

At the Treaty of Verdun (843), which divides the Carolingian Empire, the Provence goes to Lothair. During more than a century, it will undergo tumultuous succession, dislocation and chaotic Government. At the death of Hugh of Arles, marquis of Vienna and Duke of Provence (947), it will be embedded in the Bourgogne transjurane (covering a portion of the current Burgundy, Franche-Comté and the Switzerland) to form the Kingdom of Bourgogne-Provence, which extends from Basel to the Mediterranean with the Viennese. The King, too far away, will delegate its powers to some Burgundian lineages. As early as 948, Conrad will appoint the two brothers Boson and Guillaume Arles and Avignon, and Griffon counties county Apt, and along them with Viscounts in Marseilles and Cavaillon. Invested loads which will become hereditary, counties and other Burgundian officials, little by little, will acquire a true independence. So two or three centuries after patrice Mummolus, a number of Burgundian noble families, trying to turn the adventure in Provence, seek to take the place of the latino-chretiennes families of old Provençal strain, and defraud them.

The game of the Saracens

The Saracens or moors of Spain, have control over the Mediterranean, their fleets make incursions in the Provencal ports. At the end of the 9th century, one of their ships ran aground in the Gulf of Saint-Tropez. The crew took refuge in the surrounding wooded hills, landscape is a basis, updates to bag the vicinity, received reinforcements. The establishment of the Saracens in Provence gave material to stories in a few "lives of saints", as the life of Saint Bobon (originating from the region of Sisteron), which contain information on the vicissitudes of this occupation. But the authors, who write a century or two after the events, have the ambition to stir up religious fervor by pious stories, not make work of historians. Only Liutprand, Bishop of Cremona (Lombardy '; contemporary events (he died in 972) it follows a good observation post (the Court of Hugh of Arles) provides a cre-credible testimony but relatively short.)
According what he suggests as a first step at service of Burgundians, looters sow ruin in Eastern and Central Provence, using local divisions. Thus Fouquier de Valensole, who, during his marriage, had specified his membership in the "Roman law", soon loses its areas and life; his widow and son Mayeul must flee in Macon, one of the cities of the counts of Auvergne, also of Latin tradition: "they were not the only ones to escape the vengeance of the Burgundians and it is a manhunt without mercy that suggests the fugitive list".
On the territory of the ancient city of the Saliniens, no historical document accredits the evils of the Saracens and the robbers that have joined them. We cannot deduce that are completely unfounded episodes described by regional historians of the 18th and 19th centuries such as Laurensi and Lambert. After this last, a band would be installed in the vicinity of Castellane to serve as a relay to the looters who, by the Castellane-Comps-Draguignan road, brought home loot and captive to the shore, from where departed ships for Moorish market of the Balearic Islands, Sardinia, Sicily and North Africa". Whatever it is these approximations, it is certain that from the barbarian invasions, the population has abandoned the Roman towns of Salinac and Riez, untenable in the plain, and found refuge on the ancient hill forts of Sinaca and Saint-Maxime.
As the towers and the Saracen door we encounter through Provence and that excited so many imaginations in the last century, their rapprochement with the Arab fortifications based on vague similarities.

Saint-Pancrace - Digne
Bléone Valley - Digne

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