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(canton of Rugles, Eure)

Church of Notre-Dame-Outre-l'Eau 

    The building presents a very simple plan formed from a rectangular nave with three spans extended by a choir with a semi-circular apse.
The main originality of the church stems from its construction. The north wings of the nave, choir and apse, as well their buttresses were in fact created in a bond combining small cubic rubblestones in flint (1 to 2 rows), flat bricks of the Romanesque type (1 to 3 beds) and, in the choir, limestone freestone. There is also a sort of primitive opus spicatum bricks which is outlined on either side of the central buttress of the nave.
This type of construction which is found almost to the last detail in the churches of Ouilly-le-Vicomte and Vieux-Pont-en-Auge, seem to characterise, within the region, the edifices built in the year one thousand or thereabouts. Not without cause has this type of ornamental bonding with formulae used in the mid Loire region, without completely ruling out the possibility of the local development of a tradition inherited from Antiquity and the high Middle Ages. The latter possibility is considerably reinforced in the present case by the fact that the church is built on Roman thermae whose materials it re-used.


- Coutil L., L’église mérovingienne et carolingienne de Rugles (Eure), Recueil de la société libre d’agriculture, des sciences, arts et Belles-Lettres de l’Eure, 1919-1921, p. 63-75.
- Dictionnaire des églises de France, Belgique, Luxembourg, Suisse, IVB, Normandie, Paris, 1968, p. 147-148 (notice de M. Baudot).
- Musset L., Normandie romane, 2. Haute-Normandie, La Pierre-qui-Vire, 1974, p. 32-33.
- Baylé M., Les origines et les premiers développements de la sculpture romane en Normandie, Art de Basse-Normandie, n°100 bis, 1992, p. 36, 37, 43, 103 et pl. 2.
- Cliquet D., Carte Archéologique de la Gaule. L’Eure. 27, Paris, Académie des Inscriptions et Belles Lettres, 1993, p. 237