Posts Tagged ‘Richard the Lionheart’
A 20 MINUTE DRIVE FROM THE DORDOGNE RIVER AT CARENNAC takes you to the nearly vertical village of Rocamadour which has been visited by pilgrims since the 9th century who were traveling to Santiago de Compostela. In 1166 when the perfectly preserved remains of St. Amadour were discovered just in front of its little Chapelle Notre-Dame, Rocamadour became one of the most important centers for religious pilgrimage in all of Europe. It is said, ‘St. Amadour’ was actually Zacchaeus, a tax collector in Jericho at the time of Christ, who was advised by the Virgin Mary to come to this location in France to live out his remaining years as a hermit.
Toward the end of the 12 century, Henri Courtmantel, aka: “Young King Henry”, son of King Henry II of England & Eleanor of Aquitaine, plundered Rocamadour and stole its most prized relics including; Rowland’s famous sword, Durandal and a small statue known as the ‘Black Virgin’ . Ultimately, under pressure from King Henry II, he returned these relics to Rocamadour and they can be seen there today.
Henri Courtmantel, crowned King Henry III of England during his father Henry II Plantagenet’s lifetime, died in the nearby village of Martel during the year of 1183 full of remorse for his big heist. His brother, Richard the Lionheart, became next in line to the throne.
Over the centuries thousands have crawled up the 216 stone steps of Rocamadour’s Grand Escalier on their knees to seek forgiveness & cures or even more harshly… as penance for petty crimes committed.
Regional map/ carte- region:
Rocamadour is the second most visited destination in France, outside of Paris, and a ‘must-do’ on any itinerary into the Dordogne River Valley!
à bientôt! Jack
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