Series: Old Postcards Showing Dry Stone Huts
18 - TURF-COVERED HUT AT PRATS-DE-MOLLO, PYRÉNÉES-ORIENTALES
One cannot help wondering at the sight of a dry stone hut that looks like it was built just a short while ago, with its covering of sods freshly taken from the surrounding turf. If the lower part of the hut consists undeniably of mortarless walling, one is left without a clue as to what may lie underneath : is it a stone vault or a rudimentary wooden roof?
There is nothing like first-hand field evidence as is shown by the questions left unanswered in analysing this colour postcard of the 1970's.
However, another postcard of the same edifice, published two decades later – the specimen we possess is postmaked 1993 – fortunately provides an answer to this question. A large part of the covering of sods has been removed from the roof, exposing as a result the stone extrados of a corbelled vault.
This being a front, instead of a three-quarters, view, one is able to notice the presence of a small, squarish window opening in the lower part of the roof to the left of the entrance
The caption on the back side – MESSAGE DU SUD... PYRENEES : Typique cabane de berger (A MESSAGE FROM THE SOUTH...IN THE PYRENEES: A typical shepherd's hut) – tells us hardly anything more than is already known.
At all events, these two documents are proof that a turf-covered hut survived well into the final quarter of the 20th century in the Pyrénées-Orientales department.
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To be referenced as :
Old Postcards Showing Dry Stone Huts
18 - Turf-covered Hut at Prats-de-Mollo, Pyrénées-Orientales
June 3rd, 2009