You are in Sorèze... then you take the RD 45, in the direction of Arfons, in the Black Mountain and arrive at Saint-Jammes, in a superb clearing. Be careful, the path is difficult...
The pre-Romanesque chapel
The foundations of a pre-Romanesque chapel from the 11th century and a splendid 450 year old beech tree appear before your eyes. This chapel is mentioned in a text dated 1130 concerning the donation of half of the church's tithe to the abbey of Sorèze by the lords who owned it.
The small church served as a rural parish, and the monks celebrated baptisms, marriages and burials in agreement with the parish priest of Durfort. Burials in the cemetery surrounding the chapel are mentioned in 1669, 1684 and 1728 in the Durfort archives.
Destroyed during the Revolution, the chapel had ended up becoming a mound.
Left abandoned since the end of the 18th century, the exterior walls remain today, about one and a half meters high. The choir is well defined by the base of two pillars and the ruins of the apse are sheltered by the multi-centennial beech. The entrance door was located on the south wall and a small door on the north wall probably gave access to the cemetery.
The multi-centennial beech tree
It is the pride of the inhabitants of Sorèze. 450 years old, 20 meters high, with a trunk of 6 meters in circumference and a foliage whose diameter reaches 90 meters, it has been honored several times in 2020.
In March 2020, first of all it was ranked eleventh in the European competition in which it participated as a representative of France. In August 2020, Mrs. Mayor, received from the hands of Georges Féterman president of the association A.R.B.R.E.S. (Remarkable Trees: Assessment, Research, Studies and Safeguarding) the prize of the remarkable tree of the year 2019.
At a time not so long ago, pregnant women came to rub their swollen bellies on its bark, just to bring luck to the future newborns.
The site of Saint-Jammes will delight walkers and hikers, history and archeology lovers with the remains of this chapel and nature lovers with the forests that surround it. The Orival spring is also nearby. Moreover, the legend claims that gold would be found in its waters?
Saint-Jammes de Bezaucelles
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator