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Archaeology at Mont-Saint-Michel

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« on: January 08, 2012, 04:22:25 pm »

Archaeology at Mont-Saint-Michel
Archaeology at Mont-Saint-Michel

Mont-Saint-Michel. Denis Gliksman/Inrap
Archaeology at Mont-Saint-Michel
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Thursday, January 5, 2012  |  Featured, News



A team of archaeologists from INRAP have recently completed an excavation at the foot of the ramparts of Mont-Saint-Michel, uncovering the remains of  the Tower of Denis, a fortification tower built sometime around 1479 and destroyed in 1732.

Curated and financed by the Regional Direction of Cultural Affairs of Basse-Normandy, this intervention is part of a project to reconstruct the maritime aspect of Mont-Saint-Michel and to restore its fortifications.
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« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2012, 04:24:15 pm »



Remains of the ancient Tower of Denis, demolished in 1732. The excavation revealed two stages of the ground level of the lower floor of the edifice. The first is characterized by the use of small granite blocks. Later, larger granite blocks were put into place to raise the floor level. To the left of the remains of the Tower of Denis, are the first steps leading to a postern dating to the 14th century. © Denis Gliksman/Inrap
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« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2012, 04:24:39 pm »

The Tower of Denis

In 1997, archaeological test-pits revealed the remains of the Tower of Denis located at around 1.5 metres below the current shore level. The archaeologists had to remove nearly 300 m3 of sand and sediments using a mechanical excavator. They also had to build a wide bank to protect the excavation from high tides.

This work revealed the foundations of the tower and part of the pavement stones of the lower room of  the tower. A foundation wall constructed later between the Tower of Denis and the neighbouring Tower of Liberty to protect the base of the ramparts against the violent tides, was also identified.
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« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2012, 04:25:12 pm »



The excavation site of the Tower of Denis is located at the foot of the ramparts of Mont-Saint-Michel. This operation required the construction of a large bank to protect the site from high tides. © Denis Gliksman/Inrap
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« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2012, 04:25:50 pm »

A tower in ruins as early as 1690

The construction of a “curtain” (a small wall linking two towers) between the Tower of the Arcade and the Tower of Liberty is attested from 1441. The Tower of Denis was constructed against this curtain around 1479. It is also located near a postern (small door integrated into the wall) which was part of the first line of defense that operated during the 14th century. On a relief-map of the fortifications of Mont-Saint-Michel, dated to 1690, the Tower of Denis appears to be partially ruined by the sea water.

Due to its poor state and its location on a section of the rampart that was already well protected by the Arcade and Liberty Towers, the engineer Pierre de Caux, in charge of the restoration of the fortifications, considered the possibility of its elimination. The Tower of Denis was then demolished in 1732 and the continuity of the rampart was thus restored.
In the near future, it is hoped that the remains of the tower will be partially restored by François Jeanneau, head architect of the Historic Monuments department.

In 2005, an Inrap team recovered a large quantity of schist moulds used to cast pilgrimage symbols (scallop shells, the effigy of Saint-Michel, etc.) in the location of a production workshop dated to the 14-15th centuries, near the entrance to the Abbey. Due to their variety and quality, these pieces now serve as reference objects in medieval archaeology.

http://www.pasthorizonspr.com/index.php/archives/01/2012/archaeology-at-mont-saint-michel
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« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2012, 04:26:33 pm »


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« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2012, 04:27:18 pm »

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« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2012, 04:27:43 pm »

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« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2012, 04:27:59 pm »

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« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2012, 04:28:50 pm »

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« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2012, 04:29:15 pm »

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« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2012, 04:29:29 pm »

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« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2012, 04:29:54 pm »

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« Reply #13 on: January 08, 2012, 04:30:21 pm »

mont-saint-michelhttp://www.ot-montsaintmichel.com/index.htm?lang=en
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« Reply #14 on: January 08, 2012, 04:30:33 pm »

http://www.inrap.fr/archeologie-preventive/p-7-Accueil.htm
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