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The Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey - fortress on the northwest coast


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The Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey - fortress on the northwest coast


Mont Saint Michel is a city built on an island in Lower Normandy, which for a short time became one of the most visited attractions in France and was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. It is surprising that this area, founded in 709, has always been inhabited by people. Today, when the facility has become a fully tourist attraction, Mont Saint-Michel is inhabited by several dozen townspeople. During its heyday, thousands of pilgrims flocked here, hoping to find heaven on earth. Whether they succeeded or not, we will not know, but we can state one thing: everyone who manages to visit this place will be awarded aesthetic pleasure.

History of the building

The Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey was founded by order of Archbishop Aubert at the beginning of the 8th century - in 709. In a dream, an angel appeared to Oberu 3 times, calling to build a large castle on a rock towering over the sea. The bishop could not understand what the angel needed until he snapped his fiery finger on his forehead and burned his cassock with his sword. Only then Archbishop Aubert begin construction.

A stone church was erected, first belonging to the Normans, then to the Benedictines. Gradually, a castle and a monastery were built, which by 1066 became the center of local pilgrimages. At that time, the abbot supported William the Conqueror, who generously endowed the monastery after the conquest of England. The funds were used to buy neighboring lands, and the territory expanded significantly.

During the Hundred Years War, the castle of Mont-Saint-Michel became one of the largest and most important fortresses. The British for 30 years besieged the fortress, guarded by 119 knights, and never took it.

During the French Revolution, Mont-Saint-Michel was converted into a prison for political prisoners. During this period, 300 prisoners were brought here. In 1863, the prison was abolished and restoration work began - the authorities decided to turn the facility into a tourist facility.

How to get there?

  • The most convenient option is by car, minus - in this case you will have to fork out for expensive parking
  • Budget option - regular buses stop right outside the gates of the abbey
  • Remember the tides: several times a year, the passage into the city is under water, and you cannot enter and leave the island.

What to see?

  • Archbishop Museum
  • Ecology Museum
  • Museum of the History of France.

Everyone can attend the services that take place daily in the morning and in the evening.

Interesting Facts

  • To be admitted to the service, you need to come 10 minutes before it starts
  • The island is almost 80 meters above sea level
  • The figure of the Archangel Michael, mounted on the highest point of the abbey, weighs almost a ton
  • The abbey is famous for "lambs with the taste of the sea": due to the fact that the animals grazing here feed on grass, irrigated by sea water, the meat has an extraordinary taste.

The object belongs to the abbeys.

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