Saint-Jouin-de-Marnes, Abbey of

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Former Benedictine monastery in the Diocese of Poitiers, west central France. S. Jovinus Ansionense or Enixionse, as the abbey was called before the 10th century, was founded by St. Jouin (Jovinus) in the late 4th century; at the time of its suppression in 1790, it was one of the oldest monasteries in France. After 9th-century Viking raids it prospered from the 10th to the 12th century with many donations from the nobles of Poitou and Anjou; in 1179 there were 130 benefices. The destruction of the Hundred Years' War ushered in a decline that the maurist reform checked briefly in 1655. The 12th-century abbey church, known for its façade and capitals, is one of the best examples of Romanesque art in west France.

Bibliography: Sources. l. h. cottineau, Répertoire topobibliographique des abbayes et prieurés, 2 v. (Mâcon 193539) 2:274748. c. l. de grandmaison, ed., Chartularium sancti Jovini (Niort 1854). Literature. b. ledain, Notice historique et archéologique sur l'abbaye de Saint-Jouin-de-Marnes (Poitiers 1884). a. lerosey, "L'Abbaye d'Ension ou de Saint-Jouin-de-Marnes," Mémoires de la société historique et scientifique des Deux-Sèvres 11 (1915) 3195; 13 (191718) 197517.

[g. t. beech]

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Saint-Jouin-de-Marnes, Abbey of

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Saint-Jouin-de-Marnes, Abbey of