October 5, 2016

2800 FRANCE (New Aquitaine) - At the well sweep

2800 Landes (Gascogne) - At the well sweep

A well sweep is an device used to bring water up from a well. The materials needed to construct it are wooden poles and a heavy weight of stone or clay. A vertical post, with a Y notch at the top, is mounted near the well hole. On the post is placed a horizontal pole, or sweep, which has the weight at one end, and a long, thin pole with an attached bucket at the other. A person would pull the thin pole and bucket down into the well and fill it with water, and the sweep’s weight would then lift the bucket up.

When is correctly balanced, the counterweight will support a half-filled bucket, so some effort is used to pull an empty bucket down to the water, but only the same effort is needed to lift a full bucket. Originally developed in Ancient Egypt, it has been used over time especially in plains. In France, in 1986 there remained a few surviving examples of sweeps in as many as 36 départements, where they are known, according to regional dialects, as cigogne / cigounho, canlèvo, banlèvo, manlèvo, gruo, brimbale.

About the stamps
About the first stamp, issued to mark the International Chess Festival, I wrote here. The second stamp, depicting Saint Louis (1214-1270), is part of the series France History, about which I wrote here. About the third stamp, issued to mark the Centenary of the birth of Marie Curie. Marie Skłodowska Curie, I wrote here.

The fourth stamp, designed by Jean Pheulpin and issued on May 6, 1968, depicts Château de Langeais.

About the last stamp, issued to mark the World Exhibition of the Youth Philatelic, JuvaRouen 76, I wrote here

What is a well sweep and how does it work? - Madison Barns

The balancing well in France - The website of Pierre Seche

Sender: Jean-Yves Gerlat & Starling
Sent from Grenoble (Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes / France), on 02.09.2016

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