Your next vacations on l'Ile d'Yeu
An historical and prehistorical site
The island has had a human presence since the Neolithic period, and bearing witness to this are the many Menhirs (standing stones) and Dolmens (burial chambers) which can be found all over the island. The Romans however do not seem to have had much of an interest in the island as little evidence has been found of their presence.
Religion played a central role in the development of the island during the medieval period. St. Martin and St. Hilaire came to the island in the 9th century to preach evangelism and they were followed by the monks from the Abbey of Bangor in Ireland who constructed a monastery dedicated to St. Hilaire.
In the 10th century, St. Sauveur, the then capital of the island, saw the construction of its church. Fortification of the island took place in the 16th century to guard against a perceived seaward threat and to control smuggling which was prolific at that time. The threat never materialized which meant that the defences were never tested. Of this fortification only the Old Castle (Vieux Château) built on a rocky outcrop, which becomes an island at high tide, remains today.
Extracts from: http://www.vendee-guide.co.uk
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