Moulin fortifié de Cougnaguet

Historical Monument since 1925




The Mill



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This mill was built in the 14th century by the monks from the Cistercian abbey at Les Alix, 2 km from Rocamadour. The work started in 1292 and continued for almost 60 years until it was finished in 1350.

The dam is 6 meters thick and the water retained behind 5 meters deep and dammed for 1600 meters upstream. The river Ouysse flows underground at first and then for only 11 km above ground , flowing into the Dordogne at Lacave.

The original entrance , a half-filled ogive door, was on the far side of the mill-race, and the only access to it was accross the ford.

The paving for the ford can still be seen in the water. In times of famine, the mill was occasionally attacked by the local populace, and it needed an effective defence system. The method was simply to close the door and to open the conduits inside the mill, thus creating an impassable torrent over the ford.

Two arrow slits also can still be seen in the facade. At the time of the Renaissance three other openings were created.

Around the first window the wall is 1m30 thick, and on other sode towards the hill, from the door to the corner, it is 2m10 thick. The walls provided a solid base for the massive timlber roof structure, witch in turn had to support the heavy lauzes, the flat stone tiles typical of this area.

In the 19th century the ogive entrance door was filled an replaced by the one we use.