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La prise du château de la Roche Goyon (Fort La latte) par 8 chouans en 1815


The Capture of the Castle of the Roche Goyon, castle La Latte, during the Chouannerie of 1815, was marked by striking events. It was during the Hundred Days that eight audacious Chouan officers, under the leadership of Captain Heurtel and part of the Dinan legion, managed to seize the castle on the night of July 10, 1815. They surprised the garrison of 40 men by scaling the fortress walls.


Date: July 10 to July 14, 1815

Outcome: Victory for the Imperialists

Belligerents: Imperialists against the Chouans

Commanders: Captain Heurtel

Forces on site: 40 men on July 10 / 200 men on July 14 against 8 Chouan Men

Losses: 40 prisoners on July 10 by the Chouans

None on July 14 and 1 Chouan prisoner




According to Toussaint du Breil de Pontbriand, one of the witnesses of the time, these officers aimed to obtain essential ammunition, as they were in dire need of it. The fortress, perched on a rock by the sea, protected the bay of Saint-Cast. Their bold operation was a success: they captured the sentinels and the guardhouse, taking the entire garrison hostage without spilling a drop of blood. Once control of the castle was established, they raised the white flag.


However, this victory was short-lived.

Image du film "Les chouans" de Phillipe De Broca


Recapture of the Castle by the Imperialists


Four days later, the imperial troops recaptured the fort using ladders. The eight Chouan officers surrendered, but thanks to the complicity of the ship's captain, seven of them managed to escape while being taken to Saint-Malo.


This saga was tinged with suspense, as Toussaint du Breil de Pontbriand revealed that he had not been informed of the Chouan officers' plan in time to provide them assistance. The imperial forces, thinking that the operation was connected to the English due to the presence of an English frigate nearby, quickly mounted an assault with ladders. Realizing they were outnumbered, the young officers withdrew to a small tower and were forced to surrender.


Portrait de Toussaint du Breil de Pontbriand (1776-1844), 1840, Manoir de la Ville-Robert, Saint Lormel


Although they were promised their lives would be spared, their fate almost turned when the Imperialists considered shooting them on the spot. Eventually, the leader of the Imperialists decided to have them embarked to be taken to Saint-Malo. It was then that the ship's captain offered them a chance to escape. When they were on deck, he suggested they take advantage of the proximity to land to make their escape. They bravely jumped into the sea and managed to reach the shore safely, except for one officer, Mr. du Temple, who was imprisoned until the return of the King.

Les chouans au château de la Roche Goyon, Andrews Masbath, Plévenon Cap Fréhel


The other officers managed to join Toussaint du Breil de Pontbriand, their commander, shortly after the success of their mission. These brave officers were Messrs. Heurtel, the two Kergommeau brothers, du Temple, and des Touries.


This page of history offers a captivating account of a tumultuous era where courage and cunning intertwined in the adventures of the Chouannerie of 1815 at La Roche Goyon, castle La Latte.





PRISE DU FORT LA LATTE, SUR LA CÔTE DE BRETAGNE , DANS LES CENT-JOURS, PAR M. HEURTEL, CAPITAINE. RAPPORT FAIT AU MINISTRE DE LA GUERRE, sur cette affaire, PAR M. LE GENERAL COMTE CHARLES DE POLIGNAG.



Memoirs of Colonel de Pontbriand on the Wars of the Chouannerie, Plon Edition, Paris, 1897 (reprint Y. Salmon, 1988)




Traduction en anglais automatique



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