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Saint Avit Sénieur Town Hall 
1 - Church 9 - The monk's terraces 2 - House of prayer 8 - The esplanade 7 - The presbytery 3 - Guard’s house 5 - The monk’s dormitory 6 - The cloister 4 - Fortress square

Church

1 - Church :
Byzantine from the 11th century (L 53 m X W 21 m), it was probably constructed with three domes (Like the church of Trémolat., La Cité at Périgueux and others). Two fortress towers were added in the 12th century the highest being called Alexandre ‘after Pope Alexandre III” was built towards 1270. Philippe le Hardi order to fortifying the village, with three separate surrounding walls (1270 – 1285). From this date the village of St Avit was called “Castrum Sancti Aviti Senioris” in the books.

2 - House of prayer :
Admire the superior craftsmanship of the windows in the renaissance style.

3 - Guard’s house :

Bears the inscription above the door : “Chamoine Fadelpech 1628”. This house is part of the ramparts. At the bottom of the gardens there are the remains of the fortified walls.


House with a sun dial.

4 - Fortress square :
To the left there is a house with a sun dial. To the right the wall of the church the stonework is red due to a fire during the invasion of 1214. The original semi circular apse was destroyed in 1577 and rebuilt in a straight design giving less room for the choir. Pass behind the church to the porch giving access to the cloister.


The monk’s dormitory

5 - The monk’s dormitory adjoins the church :
The porch gives access to the cloisters and the geological and archaeological museums. This building is older than the church itself. The ground floor contains the vestry and chapter house. The chapter house has a groined vaulted ceiling, built in the 12th century standing on two square pillars with simple, undecorated mouldings.


The cloister

6 - The cloister :
Served as a cemetery from 1659 to 1923. On the church walls one can see signs of the fire that destroyed the cloister. One can also see evidence of the position of roof of the cloister and the position of the beams and rafters. The well in the centre was recently excavated, producing various sculptures relating to the cloister as well as numerous stone catapult balls.


The presbytery

7 - The presbytery :
The ground floor was built in the 11th century and has a vaulted ceiling. The windows are arched slit windows. The upper part and the high gallery were built in the 17th century using recycled material which, it was discovered contained a number of sculptures from the original cloister.
The walls of the cloister on the east and south sides were the cellar and refectory.

They appear to built in a traditional “gallo-roman” style, crafted with picks into small rectangular blocks rather than with hammer and chisel. This indicates the use of this traditional technique at quite a late period.
Today the presbytery is regularly used for exhibitions.
Leaving by the porch, turning right, you see a defensive wall with loopholes and a curious low arched doorway.

The exterior of the presbytery also has original loopholes. The doorway is recent. As you return to the Place Leo Testut, take the path to the left of the post office.

8 - The Mairie and Esplanade
The Mairie used to be hostel for pilgrims on their way to Saint Jacques de Compostelle. There was also a leper hospital in an adjoining building. From the esplanade one can see the cliff in which Avitus lived in his cave. The wash house is fed from the water source where Avitus quenched his thirst. There is a Roman track in the valley which went from Beaumont to Molières and Badefols.

9 - The monk's terraces :

These cultivated terraces located on the site of ancient quarries, employed an irrigation system dug into the rock at the foot of the cliffs.


The Town’s Regular Events

- Every year, the “Votive Festival” takes place the last weekend in September.
- Every other year, the “Festival of Rural Traditions” takes place the second Sunday in August.
- Every other year, the “Autumn Festival” takes place around mid-October.
- From June until September, an art exposition, which brings together painters, sculptors...is presented in the presbytery.
- From the beginning of July until the end of August, the association “As Time Goes By” of Cadouin leads workshops for the whole family about calligraphy, illumination and sculpture, and proposes discovering the village and its history during a “puzzle” course.
- Every second Sunday in February, the Sunday after July 14, and the first Sunday in October: flea market.