The Menhir de Champ-Dolent is a menhir, or upright standing stone, located in a field outside the town of Dol-de-Bretagne. It is the largest standing stone in Brittany and is over 9 meters high.


Location

The Menhir du Champ-Dolent is 2 kilometres south of Dol-de-Bretagne in the department of Ille-et-Vilaine. It is in a small picnic area fenced off among the fields near the D795 road.

Description

The menhir is the tallest of Brittany's standing stones. Its height above ground is between 9.3 and 9.5 metres. It is made of pinkish granite, and has an estimated weight of around 100 tonnes. It is oval in shape with a smooth surface. A cross was once placed on top to Christianize it.

It has been registered as a monument historique by the French Ministry of Culture since 1889.


In folklore

According to legend, the menhir fell from the skies to separate two feuding brothers who were on the point of killing each other. This legend is said to account for the name "Champ Dolent" which means "Field of Sorrow".

Another legend states that the menhir is slowly sinking into the ground, and the world will end when it disappears altogether.

According to tradition, in the year 560 Chlothar I, King of the Franks, is said to have met his rebel son, Chram, here.