Forest of Brix
The forest of Brix extended to the east from the borough from Brix (to pronounce /bi: /), in the department of the Handle, in Normandy, in the country of the Cotentin, between Cherbourg and Valognes. Before its quasi complete disappearance, its territory covered mainly the current communes of the Mirror factory, Saussemesnil, Saint-Joseph, Négreville and Brix
From a surface of approximately 7.000 hectares towards 1665, it extended on 10 kilometers from length and 6 kilometers broad. The leafy trees accounted for 100% of the forest.
It was distinguished since the year millet from the forests from Bricquebec, Saint-Saver, which are even more in the south.
HistoryThe forest of Brix was in the beginning the heart of an immense forest of Closed Cotentin, which formaint an active triangle since Quettehou with Cherbourg and towards Saint-Saver-the-Viscount.
One places at the beginning of the 10th century the most important clearings, which are at the origin of the parishes of Martinvast, Hardinvast, Tollevast, Sottevast, in the west, and Brillevast, Vast, Chiffrevast and Barnavast in the east. Each time the word “wast” was added to a name of man, often of Germanic or Scandinavian origin. Of medieval Latin vastus which gave devastated , it was synomyme of essart or novale. In his current French form, one finds “gast” (e.g.: Saint-Denis-the-Gast), which gave to spoil .
This first period was followed by a regular exploitation of the forest. The part close to Valognes (forest of Valognes) belonged to the dukes of Normandy, then with kings de France since 1204 (from where its name of “forest of the King” in certain acts). The lords of the baronnies of Néhou, Luthumière (in Brix), Saint-Saver-the-Viscount and Bricquebec were the other owners. Each part was then reduced by regular essartage of the 12th century until the 18th century. It was then leased in Fiefferme of the king, with an important lord, who managed it in the name of the king.
In 1770, Louis XV decided to sell by batch the last important pieces of the forest of Brix, with the profit of private individuals and of new industries of the area, in particular the glassmakings, workshops of pottery and the Manufacture of ices of the Mirror factory. However, the three quarters of the royal forest were allocated to Louis Phélypeaux of Vrillière, duke of Vrillière, for 15.000 books tournaments and the stronghold of Tornay (in Versailles), this last exchange of stronghold making it possible to the king to circumvent the principle of iniability of the royal field. This last reassigned it at once in Marie-Aglaë de Cuzacque, marchioness of Langeac. Bad deals obliged it to sell in 1775 a forest of Brix started already well, with Louis-Stanislas-Xavier de France, count de Provence, brother of Louis XVI. The count of Provence completed so well the last arpents of the forest, in particular under-inféodant with clearers, to draw some from very important profits.
The sale of several important batches was at the origin of private fields which still remain for the majority, located on the communes of Brix and of Saussemesnil. Among them, one counts in particular:
- the castle of Pannelier
- the farm of Montbavent
- the castle of Frémont
- the castle of Rochemont (property of the conseul Charles-François Lebrun (1739-1824), architrésorier of the Empire.
A great number of tree trunks centenaries were resold thereafter at the royal State, at the time of the building work of the roads of Cherbourg.
It remains today of this forest, except the forests of Bricquebec and Saint-Saver-the-Viscount, only one whole of scattered wood, whose names follow:
- Wood of Boutron
- Wood of Rabey
- Wood of Coudray
- Wood of the Mount-of-Rock
- Wood of Barnavast
- Wood of Montebourg
- the Saint-Jouvin vault, close Luthumière, in Brix.
- Gerard Ermisse, the deforestation and the clearing of the forest of Brix (Handle) , 1969.
- Claude Pithois, Brix, cradle of the kings d' Écosse , 1980.
See tooForest | List of the principal forests of France | List of the forests Normans
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