Sunday, 27 April 2014

Gone crazy ? Here’s how to solve your problems.

X marks the spot..
On one of our Romanesque church hunts, we came across an unusual feature in the church of St Germain en Brionnais. We found a débeurdinoir.

So what is one of these things anyway?

Well I’ll be honest, this is not our first visit to this church. The first time we saw the notice announcing the débeurdinoir, we didn’t know what to make of it. The second visit we went searching for the blooming thing and couldn’t find it and on this, our nth visit (where n is greater than or equal to 4) I gave it a go.

The débeurdinoir
The story of the débeurdinoir dates back to the legend of Saint Menoux. He was a chappy who fell ill and died, but what happened after his body was put into a sarcophagus is what created this wonderful contraption. His servant was a bit loopy and decided to cut a hole in the side of the sarcophagus to see his master one last time. He put his head into the hole and he was cured of his craziness.

All of this happened not so far from here in a village called Saint Menoux - named after the aforementioned saint. His followers set up a priory in St Germain en Brionnais and brought the idea with them. They built a stone sarcophagus-like structure and put a hole in its side to cure the locals of their madnesses. The local patois for beast or demon is beurdin, hence the name of the contraption being a débeurdinoir a de-demoner.

I'm cured!!
So there we were, one sunny morning and I decided to give it a go. I put my head inside the débeurdinoir and I am now officially sane.

If you want to be cured too, beware, there are only two of these devices in the whole world and one of them is near our gîtes, so book early for your insanity cure!

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