Close to Agen in Lot-en-Garonne, Saint Maurin is a village situated in the hollow of a green valley, through which flows the Escorneboeuf. This charming village, with its half-timbered houses, its market hall dating from 1625 and its old well, has formed over the years around the Benedictine Abbey, itself constructed on the remains of a 6th century basilica where the Christian martyr Maurin was buried. The Abbey was very prosperous during the 12th and 13th centuries, but suffered the ravages of wars and during the Revolution its buildings became national property and were sold. Some became municipal buildings, others were bought privately, while the rest were quarried for their stones, particularly the Abbey church!
As the architect-in-chief of the Departmental Historic Monuments wrote : « The Abbey of Saint Maurin is a special case, as although delivered to the pick-axes of demolishers, it has not been subjected to insensitive reconstruction and still exists in its essential form over the entire original precinct, in the heart of the village.”