Conques Abbey France

Nestled high in the hills of southwest France, the picturesque little village of Conques is home to a magnificent Romanesque abbey church. Thanks to its relics of a virgin martyr, Conques Abbey was an important stop on the Camino de Santiago and received rich gifts from pilgrims and kings.

Quick Facts

Go Historic ID
249042
Names
Abbatiale Sainte-Foy French
Abbaye de Sainte-Foy French
Abbaye de Ste-Foy French
Conques Abbey
Coordinates
44.5992420° N, 2.3981310° E
Dates
c. 1030-1120

Historic Highlights

  •   Beautiful setting in a hilly medieval village surrounded by forest
  •   Fine early Romanesque architecture (begun c. 1030), well-preserved and original except for the towers
  •   Around 250 Romanesque capitals carved with sculptures of excellent quality
  •   Last Judgment Tympanum (1107-25) featuring intricate Romanesque sculpture, Latin inscriptions, and remnants of original paint
  •   Treasury featuring the Shrine of St. Foy, a golden reliquary statue that has attracted pilgrims since the 10th century; the "A" of Charlemagne; and the arm of St. George the Dragon Slayer
  •   The Shrine of St. Foy is said to be the only surviving medieval shrine on the Camino de Santiago

Location Map

Map showing the location of Conques Abbey, Conques, France. (Note: The address shown in the upper-left panel is sometimes inaccurate.) Click here to view larger.

Aerial View

Aerial view of Conques Abbey, Conques, France. (Note: The address shown in the upper-left panel is sometimes inaccurate.) Click here to view larger.

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Timeline

819
A hermit named Dadon founds a monastic community in the forest at Conques
876
A monk from Conques steals the relics of St. Foy from Agen monastery
c. 900
Golden reliquary-statue created for the relics of St. Foy; pilgrim route shifts from Agen to Conques
c. 1030
Construction of Conques Abbey under Abbot Odolric
1107
Carving of the Last Judgment Tympanum at Conques Abbey under Abbot Boniface
1568
Conques Abbey set on fire by Protestants during the Wars of Religion; towers collapse
1793
Treasures of Conques Abbey are hidden by locals to avoid government seizure during the French Revolution
1 Jan 1803
Treasures of Conques Abbey are returned to the church in a procession
1830
Large portion of Conques Abbey cloisters destroyed, following long-term pillaging of stone by villagers
Jun 1837
Prosper Merimée, first Inspector General of Historical Monuments, visits Conques Abbey and begins advocating for its restoration

5 more events →