Saint Malo

Located in the north of Brittany, St Malo was named after Father MacLaw, a Welsh monk and bishop who fled Wales to Brittany in 538. This 44-acre fortified city became very famous in 1590 when its inhabitants declared it an independent republic! Their motto was "Neither French nor Breton, but a Corsair am I". This status did not last more than four years but that was long enough for St Malo’s residents to earn a strong reputation as rebels. In the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, St Malo acquired considerable wealth, not only from its maritime trade between the Americas and Europe but also, and mainly, from the very lucrative ventures of its corsairs. The trade generated by the "Newfoundlanders", those fleets that set off to fish for cod in Newfoundland (east coast of Canada), accounted for some of St Malo’s prosperity and glory. However, its most profitable business, without a doubt, came from capturing merchant English and Dutch vessels with the King of France's blessing!


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