A little etymology
The name “Ayen Moustiers,” the monastery at the foot of the hill, sums up the monastic origins of Eymoutiers. The town developed around the cult rendered on the sepulchre of Saint Psalmet, who came from Ireland at the turn of the 7th century.
The name of the inhabitants of Eymoutiers, named Les Pelauds, that is to say “those who work the skins” (pellis in Latin), comes from the tannery that made Eymoutiers prosper, especially in the 17th century.
Eymoutiers developed on the left bank of the Vienne, where large side slabs overhung the river to ford it, in order to provide for the water needs of the time, the surrounding rounded puys allowed the construction of fortifications.
Eymoutiers, a prosperous city
In the 17th century, the religious brotherhoods and the guild of tanners, installed on the banks of the Vienne, were influential. The city was prosperous, all social categories rubbed shoulders: notables, merchants, craftsmen.
The good road network in the 19th century was to develop a local traffic, the fairs thus kept all their importance.
A little architecture
The activity of the tanners continued until 1914, with the perseverance of the last tanner. It gives an original physiognomy to the houses whose attics are open timber-framed.
Look up and discover another peculiarity for a town in the Limousin mountains: the roofs are low-sloped covered with hollow tiles. The plot is narrow and dense which does not exclude some beautiful houses of notables.
A new lease of life
At the end of the 19th century, the arrival of the railroad gave Eymoutiers back its place as a merchant town in the Limousin Mountains. Today, one can still immerse oneself in the atmosphere of the time by taking the steam train that runs in season in the Vienne Gorges.
During the twentieth century, the activities around wood bring employment.
This small tourist town of character shines through its dynamism driven by an important commercial, artisanal and associative fabric.
To visit: its 11th and 15th century collegiate church classified as a historical monument with 16 stained glass windows unique in the Limousin, its old tanners’ quarters on the banks of the Vienne and its old houses, the Espace Paul Rebeyrolle, the Mineral Museum
Salty or sweet ? let yourself be tempted by the local specialties : Pelaud, pelaudine, pavé d’Eymoutiers, potato pâté, Limousin beef, “belou” lamb.
Office de tourisme des Portes de Vassivière