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To see

Les capitelles

A Capitelle picture by Cédric Sabatier


A "capitelle" is a concrete-free stone shelter made according to an ancient construction technique. It is built not to become a permanent habitat but on the contrary to provide temporary accommodation for tools, harvest or people.


Often the work of peasants, wine makers or farm workers, the 'capitelles' are built on the least favourable terrain ('garrigue', 'maquis', 'taillis'...low brush and scrubland) at a time of land clearing using any local available building material, often limestone.


They date from a period ranging from the end of the eighteenth century till the end of the nineteenth century. These constructions are neither improvised nor approximate architecture. It shows a most defined and precise technique.


Picture of a Capitelle by Cedric Sabatier Capitelle inside, picture of Cedric Sabatier




The lime kiln


On the right bank of the Vidourle river, the Ambrussum countryside is marked by a lime kiln. One cannot talk about lime without starting to talk about the raw material itself: limestone.

Transformed into a white powder after calcining, lime is a material used a lot since ancient times until the nineteenth century.


The lime kiln is located in the grounds of the Ambrussum site and was built using local stones coming most certainly from the surrounding 'garrigue' (dry aromatic shrub land).

It was built in the eighteenth century and was used by Poureau's mill miller.

Traditionally, lime kilns used to be destroyed after each use, but some new types of lime kiln called 'permanent' appeared and remained active for several decades which is the reason why today we still have the traces of such a construction in the Ambrussum site.


During the nineteenth century, concrete replaced lime and put an end to the use of these lime kilns.


Quality labels

Opening time :


  • October to December and February to May : open every afternoon except Monday, 2pm – 5.30pm
  • June and September : open daily except Monday, 10am – 12.30pm / 2 pm – 5.30pm
  • July and August : open daily except Monday, 10am – 12.30pm / 2.30pm – 7pm

Guided visits (in french)

Guided visits are available at 3pm every Saturdays without booking and some Sundays with booking (click here for see all the dates). 



Free access to archeological site and site museum.

Prices of guided visits (in french only)

  • Full rate : 5€
  • Reduced rate : 4€
  • Reduced price : 12-18 years olds, students, jobseekers, groups ≥ 10 people
  • Free for children less than 12


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