The territory of the modern département of Tarn was an important occupation of the soil in the Palaeolithic. Inhabited by the Gallic tribe of the Rutenes, the country was conquered by the Romans in the 1st BC and formed the "Civitas Albigensium", incorporated into the first Aquitaine. From the 5th took place the barbarian invasions (vandals, Suebi, Visigoths, Francs, brash) that marked the end of the Gallo-Roman civilization. Integrated into Septimania, the Albigenses was thereafter specific counties, then the Viscounts (ATO) under the suzerainty of the counts of Toulouse. The Cathar heresy had many followers, known as the Albigensians; in order to combat the threat that Catharism posed to the feudal power, the Knights of the North of the France joined forces, under the command of Simon de Montfort: the crusade against the Albigensians ravaged across the country (massacre of Lavaur in 1211); Simon de Montfort was granted the areas of Trencavel, that his son handed to Philippe-Auguste in 1222; the establishment of the Inquisition put an end to heresy. The reform spread in the region; Castres became same strong Protestant, over Albi, remained in the hands of the Catholics. The edict of Nantes guaranteed religious tolerance; his removal was marked by serious disorders, and from 1702 to 1710 took place, in the mountains of the region of Castres, a few minor operations related to the war of the camisards. An ancient industrial tradition allowed the 19th century economic development (wool industries, mines and metallurgy).


The Department of the Tarn is part of a zone of contact between the Aquitaine basin and the Massif central. It has the appearance of an amphitheatre of hills and plateaus inclined towards the South-West, bordered to the East by crystalline mountains. The Massif central are dependent on the primary mountains which form the eastern edge of the Tarn. It is slate plateaus of low altitude (Grésigne, Segala, upper Valley of the Dadi), or of massifs of granite, schist and gneiss Southeast (monts de Lacaune Sidobre, Black Mountain). Stand the heights have been affected by the Pyrenean uprising comes 1,260 Mr. rivers is there are spawning a passage by digging deep gorges. Introducing the characters of a relief side, hills formed by the deposition of gravel resulting from the erosion of the Massif central ensures the transition with the aquitaine tertiary, sandy and Stony Plain. The Tarn River and tributaries, l¹Agout and the Dadou, occupying three valleys wide and charming, across the Department and will carry their water to the basin of the Garonne. The climate is the result of the dual membership of the Tarn in the Massif central and the Aquitaine basin: the ocean influences come to temper the continental influences. The proximity of the Mediterranean is also felt. The prevailing West winds cause softness and moisture; the Northeast winds are dry and cold. Agriculture is in very diverse faces exploitation and breeding on the heights; cereals, fruits, vegetables and vegetables in the valleys and Plains; vineyards on the slopes of the Gaillac. The industry occupies an important place: mining and quarrying, produced chemical, metallurgy, food industry, wool and textile industry.

The arts

The artistic heritage of the Tarn is an exceptional wealth. Important tools Paleolithic, of very many dolmens, menhirs and statues-menhirs, statues and Gallo-Roman pottery, sarcophagi of marble of the Aquitaine school (6th-8th) testify to a distant civilization and sometimes little known. Under the leadership of large abbeys, Romanesque quilting flourished in Albi from the 11th to the 13th; He is represented by beautiful churches (Ambialet, Roumanou, Caladen, St-Michel de Gaillac), or interesting rural chapels (St-Vaast to Coufouleux, Lasplanques in Tanus, Infournats to Jouqueviel), but especially by the churches of Lescure and Burlats, conceiving of the albigeois novel. The return of religious peace was marked in the 13th, the advent of Gothic art, the most remarkable monument is the Ste - Cécile of Albi Cathedral, towering mass of pink brick, which received in the 15th and 16th a dazzling decoration (flamboyant Rood, paintings of the vault): this is the head-of conceiving of the Languedoc Gothic, including the Saint - Salvy of Albi, St-Alain de Lavaur churches, those stringsRabastens and old are illustrations. Albi boasts of beautiful castles (Castelnau-de-Lévis, Penne, St-Géry, du Cayla), medieval houses with Burlats (Adelaide Pavilion), Puycelci, Lautrec. There are also remarkable architectural ensembles: fortified towns or old bastides at characteristic level (Valence-D'albigeois, Pampelonne, Castelnau-de-Montmiral, Réalmont); Albi with its episcopal (Cathedral and palais de la Berbie) and old brick houses. Castres and its picturesque houses of the edges of the Agout, its beautiful hotels of the 16th and 17th, the Cathedral and the former bishopric in the classic elegance of 17th and 18th. Need to make room for hand string, which has preserved its medieval aspect, with its enclosure, its steep streets and its Gothic houses doors, while returning a small-scale City active and creative. Our base contains 286 elements of heritage for the tarn Department (81)

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