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Roaix (Municipality, Vaucluse, France)

Last modified: 2017-12-23 by ivan sache
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Flag of Roaix - Image by Arnaud Leroy, 3 March 2004

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Presentation of Roaix

The municipality of Roaix (662 inhabitants in 2014, 583 ha) is located 40 km north of Avignon and 6 km west of Vaison-la-Romaine.

Thee archeological site known as Les Crottes (after Latin crotae, "caves"), consists in an hypogeum including about a hundred of human skeletons. Most of the human beings buried there had an arrow point stuck in thorax; accordingly, it is believed that an early collective slaughter took place in Roaix in the late Neolithic (Chalcolithic). An artefact known as the Roaix perl, dated with carbon-14 to 3015-2207 BP, was once considered as the most ancient glass artefact found in southern France and the possible indication of an early elaborated glass craft industry. However, a more recent study showed that the pearl was made of turquoise and not of glass.

Roaix was mentioned for the first time as Roais in 1137, then belonging to the bishop of Vaison. Next year, the domain was granted to the Knight Templar commandery of Richerenches. The commandery of Roaix was granted autonomy in 1148. After the suppression of the Order of Temple in 1312 by Pope Clement V, Roaix became a Papal domain, immediatly enfeoffed to the Vaesc family. The castle of Roaix was built in the 16th century.

The village is divided into two parts, the old village on top of the hill, around the castle, and the new village on the banks of the river Ouvèze. The bridge on the Ouvèze was destroyed in September 1992 by the flood which also flooded Vasion-la-Romaine.
Grapevines cover 85% of the cultivated area of Roaix. Roaix is the smallest (46 ha) of the 16 villages that are allowed to use the name "Côtes-du-Rhône Villag" and add their name on the label of the bottles.

Ivan Sache, 3 March 2004

Flag of Roaix

The flag of Roaix is white with the municipal coat of arms, surmounted by a crown and surrounded by two branches.
The coat of arms is "Gules on a fess argent four columns througout sable in chief two mullets or".

Ivan Sache, 3 March 2004