The legend of the famous golden goat stems from the Fontvieille region.
It is said that in the days when the Moors were fighting the people of Provence, one of them by the name of Abd al-Rahman had to flee, carrying with him a fabulous treasure.
He found refuge in a cave in the Baux Valley called the Fairies’ Hole, where he thought of hiding his treasure. There in the dark, Al-Rahman came across a goat which lived in the mountains. When he tried to follow the goat, he became lost and stumbled into the den of the witch Taven. The sorceress handed him three phials, each containing a liquid, and advised him to trust the goat’s instincts.
He followed it down a long corridor and into a room where a giant mandrake was growing. Shaped like a human, with human features, it captured the intruder and tried to suffocate him. The Moor sprinkled a few drops from one of his phials on the creature, which released its stranglehold immediately and withered away.
After having walked down a dizzying flight of steps, he and the goat came to a hall filled with ghosts. Abd al-Rhaman uncorked the second phial and sprinkled it on the phantoms, which disappeared at once.
The two of them wandered on until at last they glimpsed a reddish glow in the distance. “The sun!” crie the Moor, and rushed forwards, but the goat refused to go with him. He forced it to follow him and thought he had finally found the hiding place he was looking for. He piled up his gold coins, his silver jewels, his precious stones and other riches.
When he had finsihed, he turned around and found himself face to face with a frightening black beast with eyes that glowed like fire. Realizing that he had mistaken them for the light of the setting sun, the Moor searched frantically for his third phial but could not find it. With only his courage to fall back on, he launched himself into a deadly struggle with the monster.
By the first light of day the goat emerged from the mountain, covered in gold dust, because the battle had been so ferocious that the treasure had been pulverized.
Abd al-Rahman was never seen again. After waiting in vain for him to reappear, his servant fled at a gallop and told his story to an old shepherd.
They say that the treasure still lies hidden in the cave. Some shepherds claim to have seen the golden goat, wandering around the Fairies’ Hole, licking the saltpeter from the walls, right near Baumanière.