A little history of Saint-Jean-le-Vieux tower

The towerThe tower | ©Véronique PAGNIER / Public domain

An old tower

This tower is the only vestige of the old house belonging to knights of Saint-John of Jerusalem. Other buildings were destroyed in 1898... It has 4 floors.

Knights in Avignon

Our story began when bishop from Notre-Dame-des-Doms allowed Garsias de Liza, great master of the Templar, to raise a church, a cemetery and a house inside the city walls.

Then in 1379, Knights moved in the house named Saint-Jean-de-Rhodes, who also belonged to the Templars. The Apostolic Seat decided to give the place to cardinal Pierre Corsisi. And when popes left Avignon, the Knight house was abandoned...

The old house was sold during the Revolution, then transformed into barracks between 1793 and 1833. Nowadays, a plaque on the tower's wall says about this long past: La tour a été restaurée. La place du marché agrandie. Napoléon III étant empereur, Mathias Debelay archevêque, Adolphe Durand Saint-Amand préfet, Paul Pamard députe-maire, Edouard Perrot, Jean-Baptiste Clerc, Eugène Bastide, Jean-Baptiste Madon adjoints au maire. MDCCCLXI

Which means: "The tower was restored, the market square was extended. Emperor Napoleon III, Mathias Debelay archbishop, Adolphe Durand Saint-Amand prefect, Paul Pamard deputy-mayor, Edouard Perrot, Jean-Baptiste Clerc, Eugène Bastide, Jean-Baptiste Madon, mayor".