"Four à boulets - cannonball furnace." Top 5 Page for this destination Iles de Lérins Tip by breughel
Iles de Lérins, Cannes: 17 reviews and 29 photos
It is nowadays difficult to imagine that a few centuries ago there were gun batteries on these now quite pacific islands in order to defend the coast from the approach by enemy vessels (there are also bunkers from WW II on the coast of the island).
The "four à boulets" cannonball furnace beneath the observation platform at the Pointe du Dragon was part of this defensive system and has been build in 1793 under command of general Bonaparte (who started his military career has artillery officer).
These ovens could heat 20 metal cannonballs till they were red-hot. That would take about 35 min. Must have been rather hazardous for the gunners to introduce these red-hot cannonballs inside the tube of the gun!
There are two of these "four à boulets" on the Ste-Marguerite Island and also two on the St-Honorat Island.
From the seventeenth century on, the Ile Sainte-Marguerite had essentially a military vocation.
Under King Louis XIII the Cardinal de Richelieu started to build the fortress, which was almost immediately conquered by the Spaniards. The memory of that occupation is guarded by the name Pointe du Dragon which is not linked to any dragon but an alteration of the Spanish Aragon.
Address: Ile Ste-Marguerite
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