| Matignon - Pléboulle - Ruca - Saint-Denoual - Saint-Pôtan
Ruca - Origins
Origin of the name: the fi rst known document attesting to the existence of Ruca dates back to 1159, where the name takes the form of Rocam, stone, and develops into Rucha. This name could also come from ruskat (beehive), deriving from the old Breton word rusc, meaning bark. The parish of Ruca, which is not far from the old Roman road linking Corseul with Carhaix, was first mentioned as a parish in 1232, with the spelling Ruscha. In the 10th Century, the countryside, which had been ravaged by the Normans, was saved by the Knights Templar. In the Middle Ages the barony of la Hunaudaye had suzerainty over Ruca. Between two violent outbreaks of the plague, in 1597 members of the Sainte Ligue took over the parish and destroyed most of the houses. During the Revolution there was a tough fight between Chouans (counter-revolutionaries) and Republicans. The fi rst local council was elected at the beginning of 1790.
Ruca - Heritage
As you arrive in the pretty little village of Ruca you can’t miss one of its most important attractions, the gothic Chapel of Notre-Dame-de-Hirel (15th and 16th Centuries). Inside you can see:
• A polychrome wood statue of the Virgin (16th Century) holding baby Jesus in her left arm; the kneeling donors are Bertrand du Boisriou and his wife.
• The rosary picture (1641), which was restored in 2001 and is interesting for its portraits. In front of the chapel, well visible from the road, is the 15th Century Hirel cross with a roofed-over figure of Christ.
As you go down the road which leads to the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, you will see the beautiful 300-year-old oak tree. Its branches hide the monolithic granite cemetery cross, with a naïf 14th Century Christ .
In the cemetery is a 100-year-old yew tree. Above the porch you can see a 15th Century granite statue of St.Anne, the Virgin and child in a niche. Inside:
*a coloured wooden high altar piece from 1687
*a 17th Century painted wooden statue of St. Anthony of Padua
From the road you can see the Bois Rouault manor house (Renaissance period private property) with a square tower with corbels and arrow slits. There is an interesting cross at Douétel.
• Area: 1298 hectares
• Population: 572 Rucassiens