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Arzon (Municipality, Morbihan, France)

Last modified: 2023-11-11 by olivier touzeau
Keywords: arzon | crouesty (le) |
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Flag of Arzon - Image by Ivan Sache, 7 October 2011

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Presentation of Arzon

The municipality of Arzon (2,153 inhabitants in 2006; 893 ha) is located at the end of the Rhuys Peninsula, limited by the Gulf of Morbihan (north) and the Atlantic Ocean (south). Arzon has two summer resorts, Port Navalo and Le Crouesty, and 3,5 km of beaches, out of 35 km of coast.

Arzon is the place in the Rhuys peninsula with the oldest documented history; in 836, King Louis the Pious granted the village to the St. Saviour abbey in Redon. A possible etymology of the village's name is "a redonense", "(depending) on Redon".
Arzon is made of two main villages, Kerners, believed to be the oldest one, and Arzon proper, once called Locmaria, surrounded by several smaller villages and hamlets. Locmaria developed around a priory set up by the monks from Redon, of which only the barn, today a private house, has been preserved. The priory's chapel, already described as "in bad state" in 1680, was damaged during the French Revolution, partially destroyed in 1815 and eventually replaced by the modern parish church erected in 1848-1866. One of the stained-glass windows of the choir represents the Battle of Schooneveld (1673), which involved several seamen from the village, all of them proudly surviving the fighting.
The narrow entrance of the Gulf of Morbihan is watched by a statue of St. Ann, the patron saint of Brittany, specifically venerated in Arzon since the Battle of Schooneveld. At the end of the 19th century, a young woman was found dead near the Bilgroix Point; it was subsequently found that she was pregnant and had been killed by her lover, who was sentenced to deportation in the penal colony of Cayenne.

The sea resort of Port-Navalo developed in the 19th century. Inaugurated in 1910, a small train served Port-Navalo and the villages of Arzon from Vannes, via Theix and Surzur. In 1859, a young seaman was found death on the beach of Port-Navalo; the "little ship's boy", never identified, was buried in the village's cemetery, where his tomb is still carefully flourished by the villagers.
The modern marina of Le Crouesty, today the second biggest marina on the French Atlantic coast (1,432 moorings), was built in the 1970s in the Croisty Cove.
The chapel of Croisty was founded by the monks of the abbey of Rhuys to commemorate the death of their patron saint and alleged founder, St. Gildas. The saint died on 29 January 565; following his last wish, his body was abandoned in a boat, which eventually landed on 11 May 565 on the site where the chapel would be built. Every year, the monks went to the chapel on 11 May to celebrate the event. Built too close from the shore, the chapel crashed down several times into the sea and was eventually rebuilt in 1826 in a safer place.

The Tumiac tumulus (56 m in diameter, 18 m in height), located close to Arzon, is locally called Caesar's Mound, since Caesar is believed to have watched from the top of the mound the naval battle won in 56 BC by the Romans over the Veneti. The tumulus offers indeed a circular view on the Gulf of Morbihan, the Rhuys Peninsula and the Quiberon Peninsula.

Ivan Sache, 7 October 2011

Flag of Arzon

The flag of Arzon, as shown (photo) in the book L'aventure des drapeaux, by Luc Doublet (1987) [dou87], is white with the municipal coat of arms in the center.

The arms of Arzon are "Or a sailboat argent equipped ermine on a base azure". The shield is surmounted by a scroll inscribed "SOUREIN AR VOR" and surmounts a scroll inscribed with " MARIA SUPER OMNIA". The motto means, in Breton and Latin, respectively, "The sea over all". On the flag, the scrolls are blue and the base of the shield is inscribed with "ARZON", in black.

Pascal Vagnat& Ivan Sache, 7 October 2011

Yacht Club du Crouesty Arzon


Burgee of the YCCA - Image by Ivan Sache, 10 July 2021

The Yacht Club Crouesty-Arzon (YCCA, website) was established in 1990 as the merger of the Cercle Nautique du Crouesty and of the Société des Régates de Vannes et du Crouesty.

The burgee of the YCCA is a truncated triangular flag, quarterly divided white-blue-blue-blue by a red cross fimbriated in white. A sailing ship (blue sail, yellow hull) is placed in the first quarter, which is bordered in blue, while the initials "Y. C. C. A." in yellow are placed in a semi-circular pattern in the third quarter.

Ivan Sache, 10 July 2021