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This episode features our frequent and very popular guest Elyse Rivin. If you enjoy her episodes, please consider supporting her on Patreon.
Crusade Against the Cathars took place in the 1200s in Occitanie. Back then, France did not exist as the country we know today. There were regional dukes and counts who controlled different areas. The crusade against the Cathars was both a war of religion and a war of conquest.
As you listen to this episode, you'll understand how this crusade against the Cathrars is how much of Occitanie became part of France.
Book recommended in this episode: Massacre at Montségur by Zoé Oldenbourg.
Today the landscape is breathtaking and Cathar Country is a wonderful place to visit any time of year because the weather is so pleasant there. It’s also one of those places in the south of France where real estate prices are still reasonable for those of you who are thinking about finding your place in the sun in France.
Montségur and Roquefixade
We often refer to this part of France to as "Cathar Country". There are many ruins you can visit in the Aude and Corbières area that are called "Cathar Castles". But that's often a figure of speech.
The ruin of the castle of Montségur where we can take a wonderful hike, was a place where Cathars lived for about 40 years. But they didn't live in the now ruined chateau, because it was built later. They lived in a village around the castle and on top of the hill. There isn't much left of the original Cathar village at Montségur, but if you take a tour, the guide will point them out. As far as we know tours are only in French and not every day. Check the official Montségur website.
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If you enjoyed this episode, you should also listen to related episode(s):
- Lagrasse and Villerouge-Termenès, Episode 289
- A visit to Limoux in Occitanie, Episode 277
- Mirepoix, Episode 81