Noves and the mysterious tarasque

The tarasque, detailThe tarasque, detail | ©Rvalette / CC-BY-SA

The current lapidary museum is an archaeological museum.

A nice collection composed of prehistorical, Greek, Roman, Gaulish pieces.

The weirdest one is this mysterious limestone Tarasque from Noves!

Noves is a village near Avignon. Here, in a place known as gué de Bonpas, a farmer discovered a creepy statue, in 1849, in middle of his field!

Damned! Was it a wolf, a dog, a bear? The beast has a long mane, a lion tail, a bulk body covered with scales.

It sits on his back legs, its forelegs resting on bearded faces, with eyes closed: oh, they look like the chopped-off heads of Entremont, near Aix-en-Provence! In the beast's mouth, the arm of a poor victim...

This effigy dates back to -50 BC. It was used for religious rites: maybe a kind of god, a totem?