Vauluisant Abbey


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Vauluisant Abbey, near Courgenay in the canton of Villeneuve-l'Archevêque, Yonne, France, is a Cistercian abbey founded in 1127 by a group of monks from the abbey of Preuilly (Seine-et-Marne) who came to settle between the forest of Othe and the forest of Lancy, an area near the borders of Ile-de-France, Champagne and Burgundy that had come to be far from human habitation. They diverted the waters of the little River Alain and by 1 April 1129, works were far enough advanced for Henri Sanglier, the archbishop of Sens, to consecrate the modest oratory. By 1140 Vauluisant was fully operational. The abbey church was consecrated in 1149. In the second half of the 12th century, granges were established to cultivate abbey lands far from the abbey itself, at Beauvais, Toucheboeuf, Livanne, Cérilly, Armentières, worked by lay brothers who lived communally. Ironworks were established, fuelled by the dense woodlands, and tileworks, whose kilns were also fired by forest timber. The energetic Cistercians of Vauluisant produced more than the abbey needed; the surplus was sold in the market towns of Troyes and Provins, where the abbots retained domiciles, and at the cathedral town of Sens.


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