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Roman times

( The five first centuries of our era).

The defeat of the Veneti in 56 before J.C., and then of Vercingétorix in Alésia in 52 before J.C., put Armorique and Gaule under the Roman rule. This occupation went on for five centuries.

Roman administration used to root itself on existing structures, respecting the individualism (and rivalries) of the various clans, but centralizing general politics thanks to the romanization of the gallic leaders.
Therefore in our country, in the geographic limits of the Veneti tribe, a "civitas" was established, of which Darioritum (Vannes) was the capital. This civitas itself was divided into several pagi each having a vicus, a pre-existent village, as the administrative centre.

What happened to our maritime village? The specialists think that it was named Vindana Portus, as quoted by Claude Ptolémée, geographer in Alexandria in the IIth century before J.C. But it is possible that it corresponded also to Blabia or Blavia, indicated in the "Note of the Dignities of the Empire", in the IIIrd century.
click to enlargeThe Roman occupation allowed the development of the road network. There was an extension towards Blabia from the main road going from Portus Namnetum (Nantes) to Civitas Aquilonia (Quimper). From Landévant, this road passed through Nostang, Merlevenez and reached Riantec, located south of the present road.

Till the beginning of the XVIIth century, this road took the name of Grand Chemin.

Gallo - Roman mother-goddess of Locmalo
Rennes Museum of Brittany
Archaeological discoveries confirmed the Roman presence in Port- Louis :

- By 1840, the discovery of antique currencies in the city

- In 1853, the exhumation in Locmalo of a terra-cotta statuette of a mother-goddess now exposed in the Museum of Brittany in Rennes.

- In 1863, the arasement of Pen-Run artificial mound showed fine potteries and mainly Roman establishment vestiges. (L.ROSENWEIG). Unfortunately systematic searches were not undertaken.

Here are some


DULCIA (sweets)
Ingredients: 1/2 liter of milk, 200 gr. of fine semolina, oil, honey, pepper
Pour the milk and semolina into a pan and beat briskly to avoid lumps. Cook at low heat, without stopping stirring. Display this sticky dough over an oiled dish and let it cool. Cut square and lozenge shaped cookies, and fry them in oil. When they are brown, pour some warmed honey to make it liquid on top, add some pepper from the mill.
Gallo - Roman mother goddess
Vannes museum

Ingredients: 1 volume of fine semolina, 1 volume of white cheese, oil, honey, seeds of sesame.

Mix the cheese and the semolina to obtain a paste dough. Let rest one hour. Add water if it is too thick. Warm the oil, and make balls the size of a nut that you drop in the frying pan. Let them grill, drain and put on the absorbing paper. To taste it, roll balls in some honey warmed to be liquefied and in seeds of sesame.

MORETUM (cheese)

Ingredients: goat or ewe dry cheese, garlic, celery, coriander, vinegar, olive oil, nuoc-mam (to replace the garum).

Crush carefully in a mortar spices, garlic and cheese. Add while stirring some olive oil, a little vinegar and the nuoc-mam according to your taste. You get a very spicy dough to spread on a slice of bread.

According to "The antique Roman kitchen", Nicole White, Arms (equips) Nercessian, éd. Glénat

  • Civitas : administrative and political unit
  • Pagi : plural of pagus country, subdivision of the civitas

last modification : 05 27 2005