Vauclair Abbey- Bouconville-Vauclair, France
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Iris & Harry
N 49° 27.179 E 003° 44.797
31U E 554112 N 5478082
Quick Description: Cistercian abbey founded in 113
Location: Hauts-de-France, France
Date Posted: 6/27/2017 1:49:12 PM
Waymark Code: WMW1K3
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member BarbershopDru
Views: 2

Long Description:
Information from the official tourism website :

Source: (visit link) :
"At the heart of Bouconville-Vauclair Forest, some twenty kilometres from Laon, not far from the Chemin des Dames, stand the ruins of an old Cistercian abbey founded in 1134 by St. Bernard of Clairvaux. Heavily damaged during the First World War, Vauclair Abbey is a listed Historic Monument, and has retained various architectural reminders of its monastic past, like the lay building, monks' wing, foundations of the abbey church and octagonal dovecote.

Near to the ruins, a garden of medicinal plants was recreated near to the presumed site of the old infirmary. The herb garden has a grid layout following the plan of the first monastic gardens, and contains over 400 species of medicinal plants. A two-hectare conservation orchard, made up mainly of traditional varieties of apple and pear trees, completes the tour of the site."

Information from WIKIPEDIA :

Vauclair Abbey. (2016, December 9). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved
19:42, June 27, 2017
, from (visit link)

"Vauclair or Vauclerc Abbey was a Cistercian abbey founded in 1134 by saint Bernard of Clairvaux at the request of Barthélemy de Jur, bishop of Laon.


It is located in France and was built about fifteen kilometers to the south of Laon in an east-west stretch of the Ailette river valley at the foot of the northern side of the Chemin des Dames, on a site already occupied by a church, in what is now the Bouconville-Vauclair commune. The site was ceded to Bernard with all its rights and dependencies. On 23 May 1134 a group of monks from Clairvaux Abbey, headed by the Englishman, took possession of the new abbey, the fifteenth daughter house of that at Clairvaux. Its east-west orientation led Bernard to name it Vauclair (Vallis clara), reversing the name of the mother abbey (Clara vallis). Supported by gifts from rich families, the abbey quickly prospered and was given several estates and farms.

In 1142, on the initiative of Bernard and Hatton, bishop of Troyes, the abbaye Notre-Dame du Reclus north of Sézanne was made a subsidiary of the abbey at Vauclair. In 1167, at the request of Henry I of Champagne, count palatine of Champagne, Vauclair Abbey sent monks to found the abbaye Notre-Dame de la Charmoye not far from Épernay. The Hundred Years' War and the 16th century French Wars of Religion heavily damaged Vauclair abbey, though it managed to survive until the French Revolution in 1789, when it was finally demolished and sold as "national property". Its geographical location very near to the Chemin des Dames led to what was left of its buildings being almost totally destroyed in 1917 by direct artillery bombardment. Only ruins now remain.

Following excavations[1] in 1966 by a local association led by a young Belgian Jesuit, père René Courtois - who lived in the abbey from 1966 until his death in 2005 - the site was made a monument historique in 1970. The site now also includes an arboretum of apple and pear trees and a medicinal herb garden planned by Courtois and opened in 1976."
Type: Ruin

Fee: Free

24 / 7 / 365

Related URL: [Web Link]

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