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Wednesday, February 24, 2016

The Old Mill of Vernon

The Old Mill (Le Vieux-Moulin, in French) in the commune of Vernon, in northern France, is a 16th century flour mill constructed on top of an ancient bridge that once spanned the Seine River. Originally the bridge had five mills that ground corn grown in the nearby Vexin Plateau. The underside of the mills were equipped with a waterwheel that could be lowered or raised depending on the water level. The bridge is mostly gone now —only a couple of piers remain standing. The Old Mill, the last remaining flour mill, straddles across the two extreme piers of the bridge on the right bank of the Seine.

The stone bridge was built in the 12th century by King Philip II, also known as Philippe Auguste, so that he could move his troops easily. King Philip was at war with English king, Richard I who reigned over the western half of France. The bridge was protected by a bridgehead on the bank —a simple square structure flanked by four 20-meter high towers, and surrounded by a moat and linked to the stone bridge by a wooden drawbridge.







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