Historic Border

September 3, 2008

Monet’s Garden at Giverny is lined by a small stream.

The name of this stream is le Ru, which means the stream in french. It is not very informative!

But the Ru is a branch of a bigger river, the Epte, which is meaningfull. The Epte was for several centuries the border between two kingdoms, England on one side (because the English king was duke of Normandy) and France on the other side.

Between 911 and 1204 there were many castles and strongholds built on each side of the river to defend the border, and battles fought.

There is still a tower remaining in nearby market town Vernon. It was the keep of the castle. And facing this castle 10 miles away, the castle of La Roche Guyon and its medieval dungeon can still be visited.

Nowadays the river is a border between two regions, Normandy on one side and the area of Paris Ile de France on the other one. Giverny lies on the norman bank, it is the first village of Normandy when coming from Paris.