Palais des Papes

The main gate of the Palais des Papes in Avignon, Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azurin, Southern France, a fortress, palace and the seat of Western Christianity during the 14th century.

The Palais is actually two joined buildings: the old palais of Benedict XII and the new palais of Clement VI, the most extravagant of the Avignon popes. Together they form one of the best examples of the International Gothic architectural style. The construction design was the work of two of France’s best architects, Pierre Peysson and Jean de Louvres, and the lavish ornamentation was the work of two of the best students of the School of Siena (Italy), Simone Martini and Matteo Giovanetti.

Due to its immense size, the Palais was also the place where the general organisation of the Church began to change. It facilitated the centralisation of services and the adaptation of operations in order to suit the needs of the papacy. Despite this, the Palais became obsolete when the papacy found it necessary to return to Rome.

In the following centuries, the Palais lost all of its former glory, despite serving as the seat of two anti-popes and many cardinals.

All that history, yet the kids just kept on running!

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