"About the Cathars" Carcassonne by Elisabcn
Carcassonne Travel Guide: 490 reviews and 1,417 photos
Catharism was the last range of a long social and cultural development started in the far-off Persia, with Zoroaster, and took root in Languedoc (a region that during the Middle Ages had an incredible cultural development) during XIth, XIIth and XIIIth centuries. It predicated the purity of the spirit and the renounce to all the material goods. From their houses (les maisons) the perfects or priests predicated a new vision of the world that had nothing to do about the official church (the Vatican) whose ministers were rolling in money. The perfects not only talked about Theology but also about the woman’s emancipation, democracy and social welfare thanks to the daily work. At the beginning of the XIIIth century, the Cathar filosophy had reached a high influence in all Languedoc and its main cult places where the most important villages of the region: Carcassone, Toulouse, Béziers, Albi and Mazamet.
The Roman Catholic Church regarded the sect as heretical and fought hard to suppress them with the help of nobility from northern France.
There are a lot of legends and mysteries about Cathars in that region and some places like Montségur have a lot of energy.
The regions of Languedoc and Midi Pyrenées, in South of France, are full of interesting places related to the Cathars. I have been in this area following their steps twice and this is what I visited:
-A short technical step in Narbonne
-We wanted to visit Quéribus and Peyrepertuse Castles too but it was raining hard :-((
- Pros:beautiful landscapes, history, legends . . .
- Cons:France is very expensive!
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