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Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay
Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay
Author: TL (public domain)




Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay is a Burgundian monastery in France founded in 1119 by St Bernard of Clairvaux. It contains a church, cloister, and living quarters, as well as bakery and ironworks. They are located in a forested valley some 60 km northwest of Dijon.

The Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay is a reflection of the self-sufficient lifestyle of the Cistercian monks living in such cloistered communities. After flourishing for many centuries, the abbey fell on hard times from the 18th century onwards, forcing the monks to demolish the refectory in 1745. The abbey finally closed down during the French Revolution, and was turned into a paper mill which functioned until 1902.

In 1905 the Abbey of Fontenay was bought over and restored. All its original buildings were still there except for the demolished refectory. Today the abbey is set in a manicured lawn and gravel.

Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay was inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site during the 5th session of the World Heritage Committee held in Sydney, Australia, on 26 - 30 October, 1981.

Photos of Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay

Gardens of the Abbey of Fontenay
Gardens of the Abbey of Fontenay
Author: TL (Copyleft)

Cloister of the Abbey of Fontenay
Cloister of the Abbey of Fontenay
Author: Urban (public domain)

World Heritage Site Inscription Details

Location: N 47 38 21.984 E 4 23 20.796
Inscription Year: 1981
Type of Site: Cultural
Inscription Criteria: IV

Location Map of Cistercian Abbey of Fontenay

to be added soon.


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