Notable sites and buildings

AUBIAC

The admirably-preserved Romanesque church of Sainte-Marie was constructed between the 9th and 11th centuries on the foundation of a Merovingian building. Sarcophagi from that era found beneath the old sacristy bear witness to this. A 15th century Piéta, of painted wood, was found in the west tower and is now exhibited in the Agen museum. In the trefoiled chevet the cupola above the choir is decorated with 16th century frescoes representing the four Evangelists. Adjoining the church is the château, which in the mid-14th century belonged to the Galard family. Badly damaged by fire in 1784, it has been largely rebuilt in its present form. It is now a well-known exhibition centre, and also a centre for receptions and accommodation. Near the château is a Gascon corn-loft, recently restored. Like all hillside villages, Aubiac has its mills. The millers have long since disappeared, but the mills remain. There are two windmills on the “route des moulins”. The third, a watermill, is below the village itself, on the banks of the changeable stream, the Crestian. And the wash places (lavoirs), those unique village places of communication were where women gossiped and shared confidences. Now restored, they have guarded their secrets. Outside the village, while climbing the “chemin de Marron” you will see a copse on your left. It hides the ruins of the ancient chapel known as “la Gleysette”, a place well-known to the people of Aubiac. Excavations have brought to light a beautifully-made bronze horse, which can be seen in the Agen museum. Popular legends have attached themselves to this spot. Treasures would be buried there on All Souls’ Day; people say that one can hear bells ringing underground…in short, our village, like many other Gascon villages, has preserved the charm and character which give our heritage such richness.