Located on a basalt rocky peak of 20 million years, the Priory of Montverdun dominates the plain of Forez with a 360 ° panorama.
Built with basalt stones, the Priory was founded by the Augustinians in the eleventh century. Thereafter he became a Benedictine monastery depending on the abbey of Chaise-Dieu. The monks took part in the development of agriculture by digging numerous ponds in the Forez (la Reserve de Biterne d’ Arthun, l’étang du Roi de St Paul d’Uzore………)
In the XIII century the Priory was protected from possible invasions by ramparts you can still admire as you walk through the cemetery.
In his bucolic rural story l’” Astrée”, Honore d’Urfé imagined the peak of Montverdun as a place of oracles and Druids. Today the Astrée paths and circular walking and mountain bike trails invite you to discover the different episodes of the novel that pass by the castles of the Bâtie d’Urfé, St. Anne, Goutelas, the Priory and run along and through the Lignon.
Since 1687 the relics of Saint Porcaire are exposed in a silver reliquary offered by Camille de Neuville, Archbishop of Lyon.
During the revolution, the Priory became the property of the commune. One part is used as farm buildings while the local school occupies the ground floor. Many areas were demolished to provide space or sell the stones.
In 1968, the Association “Les Amis du Pic” undertook the rehabilitation of the Prior house. The church, the Priory and the walls are classified Historical Monuments in 1981.
For centuries the Priory has been a place of welcome for pilgrims to” Compostelle”.
We wish you a good visit and a good stay with us and History.