Along the wooded path which you have taken, you will come across boundary markers and upright stones, fixed in the ground. These boundary markers outline the areas on which the inhabitants or the authority had rights.
Since the Middle Ages, different methods of markings have been used. The most basic ones were markings on trees or natural landmarks, for example: trees, water-flows, stones...Later, poles and markings were erected and put into place for the single purpose of outlining the boundaries.
Some residents would try to move the markings to their advantage. To counter this, coins, coal or pieces of pottery were placed under the marking. In case of dispute, the absence of these objects proved the markings had been moved.
Observe carefully the markings you will come across. The oldest ones are upright natural stones. On one side, we notice a ploughshare representing the villagers who are mostly farmers. On the other side, however, there is an engraving representing a left hand. It is the coat of arms of the Chapel of Langres, thus marking their lands in this region, in the second half of the 18th century.
The city of Langres, about 12kms away, is indeed the seat of an important diocese since the 4th century with, at its head, the emblematic figure of the bishop. At his sides, the cathedral Chapter, made up of canons, was founded in 834. The latter held an important role, initially electing the bishop and looking after the property of the diocese in case the seat was vacant. Owning many lordships in the region of Langres, they benefited from important incomes which enabled them to pursue a building policy. In Langres, the cathedral, the cloister, the canons’ quarters or the old Saint Laurent hospital, are significant symbols of the old religious quarter and power of the Chapter of Langres.
Continue your walk by following this little path, then stop further on in the forest.
Office de Tourisme du Pays de Langres - BP16 - 52201 Langres cedex - Tél : 03 25 87 67 67 - Fax : 03 25 87 73 33