as astonishing as it may seem, the visitors are struggling to imagine Nantes in the bottom of an estuary, and still less as a historic port. They are the city in the middle of the land, far from the ocean, and in the best case at the edge of the Loire. It is true that the ports of the estuary, such as Rouen, Bordeaux and Nantes have always been a figure of poor parents, facing the Havre, Marseilles, and Dunkirk that we imagine more easily bristle with cranes and swept by sea spray. And yet, the history of Nantes is closely linked to its port, a major actor of the French maritime history.
Since the Thirteenth century, the city opens to the world by developing roads on the Atlantic and is enriched in 1816 of a currency that, two hundred years later, is worth all the speeches: Favet Neptunus eunti (which can be translated by “Neptune favours those who travel”). In the Seventeenth century, it became one of the first commercial ports of the kingdom, trade that is based on food consumption universal, such as the …
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