Travels through History – France

Extract from the book ‘Travels through History : France” available here

Catharism was an austere religion following the gnostic philosophy of God and Satan as two separate beings – God was associated with purity and Satan with every aspect of evil. Catharism encouraged its followers to adopt asceticism and celibacy even after marriage. Those who wished to serve became Perfects (Parfaits) after a demanding ceremony called a Consolamentum. This ceremony was deemed unnatural by the Roman Catholic Church and the Pope issued a Papal bull decreeing it as sacrilegious. In 1095 the Roman Catholic Church started crusades in the Middle East. After the embarrassment of the 4th Crusade (1202 – 1204) that had ended in the Sack of Constantinople – which meant most soldiers on the Crusade didn’t reach The Holy Land – Pope Innocent III turned his attention closer to home and became particularly interested in the Languedoc, where some of the people practiced a separate sect of Christianity called Catharism.

 

 

Travels through History : France

This is a book about travelling in the south-eastern parts of France.
I recently made a journey through Carcassonne, Niaux, Rennes-le Chateau, Montsegur, Payrepertuse, Fanjeaux, Mirepoix, and Perpignan. I travelled by train between these places.
The problem visitors have in France is where to go and how long to spend there, because there are so many places to choose from. However, I can help you as travelling by train is straightforward.
If you need some up-to-date information about which places to go to, read this book to discover some useful tips. The sights are extraordinary and the history is far ranging. The book combines history and sights in one small volume.
I provide descriptions of the places that interest me and some are in the guidebooks, some are not. This is a short introduction to south-eastern France told with humour and irony.
From the Niaux Cave paintings to the Roman theatres of Arles and Orange to the Cathar castles in the foothills of The Pyrenees there is much to see and remember. All of these places are in this book.

Tour de France: cycling the opening Vendée stage

The grand départ of the 2018 Tour takes place next weekend on the Atlantic coast. Our writer rides his Brompton through dunes and forests with pit stops to sample fine local seafood

Locals’ guide to Bordeaux: 10 top tips

Long famous for its food and drink, Bordeaux now has a buzzing arts scene, too. Three local experts pick places to delight your palate and mind

Ground Control calling: the new Paris arts and food hub

Its terrace is already a cool foodies’ favourite but the former rail depot turned theatre and music venue aims to attract the local community, too

Nîmes’ stunning new Roman museum dazzles in a glass ‘toga’

As the French city bids for Unesco heritage status, the stylish Musée de la Romanité shows off the extensive treasures of Roman Nîmes

Dordogne holiday guide: what to see plus the best restaurants and hotels

The food, wine and idyllic lifestyle of this region’s villages have always appealed to Brits – and with Brexit looming they’re settling in record numbers – but that has not dimmed its thoroughly French allure.