Saint Jean Du Gard

On the Road with Sally: Saint Jean du Gard

As promised, the train trip through the Cevennes was made on a sunny day this year. While more thoughts are perking about the adventure, I hope you enjoy this post about the history of Saint Jean du Gard and the area.

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photoSally’s first road trip was to the Tuesday market in Saint Jean du Gard. The town’s history dates back to the twelfth century when monks from the Abbey of St-Gilles created the settlement on the banks of the Gardon River. With its religious beginnings, Saint Jean du Gard and the surrounding area — the Cévennes — became known as a stronghold for French Protestants (Hugenots).

The citizens, mostly white-shirted Calvinist peasants (Camisards), famously banded together to fight royal control throughout years of religious wars. Many fled to America, England and Switzerland from 1685 into the early 1700’s to avoid ongoing persecution. More recent history of Saint Jean du Gard includes the town’s mention in Robert Lewis Stevenson’s Travels with a Donkey in the Cévennes.

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Market day in Saint Jean du Gard

Because market days seem to be the focus of my explorations in France, I planned the visit to Saint Jean…

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