home

Moirax Priory

This is the church of the former Cluniac priory of Sainte Marie, founded in 1049. In the 11th century the lord of Moirax, Guillaume Arnaud, decided to give his possessions to the Benedictines of Cluny and to build a Cluniac priory on the site of a small wooden church. His son Pierre was the first prior of the new priory.

The priory buildings comprised the church, the convent with its square courtyard, and the cloister, the traces of which can still be seen on the walls of the convent. The latter was completely destroyed during the Revolution.

The Romanesque church was classified as a historical monument in 1846. In 1956, its restorers made the choice to strip the walls in order to bring out the whiteness of the stone, the purity of line and the harmony of the whole. The church has 130 Romanesque capitals of remarkable craftmanship.

Inside, one cannot but admire the 17th century stalls and sculpted wooden panels representing biblical scenes; and outside, the chevet grouping with the apse and two apsidioles.