Friday, 6 May 2011

The Luberon: village of stone huts where shepherds lived.

Le Village des Bories - just outside Gordes on the D2.

This reconstructed village of dry stone huts is fascinating to visit. It is thought that bories were used as dwellings in Provence as long ago as the Bronze Age.

The one you can visit outside Gordes dates back to the 1600s. Buildings differ slightly and labels say what each was used for. As you wander round you get a sense of what it must have been like to live in such harsh conditions and in such close proximity to your animals.

The dome shaped bories were often used on a seasonal basis and driving around the Luberon you can still spot one or two in fields.

A borie is similar to a bothy. Bothies were built out of slate in England's Lake District in Cumbria by workers on slate mines. They were also built with great skill, using no mortar or cement. Both bories and bothies were used until well in the 1900s. A display in the Village des Bories shows similar dwellings in other parts of the world. More information can be found at the Gordes website Gordes village .

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