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Mayenne

Trip Planner Europe  /  France  /  Pays de la Loire  /  Mayenne  /  Mayenne
Mayenne is a commune in the Mayenne department in north-western France. It is a sub-prefecture of the department. It is situated on the river Mayenne.HistoryIn medieval times, the town was the seat of the Lords of Mayenne. The town originated when Juhel II of Mayenne built a monastery near the gate of the pre-existing castle, which led to the formation of the settlement.Mayenne was besieged twice, in 1574 and 1590, and suffered substantial damage. It was rebuilt and re-embellished in the following century thanks to the help of Cardinal Mazarin. It however suffered from plague in 1707.On 9 June 1944, during World War II, it was bombed by English aeroplanes, which caused heavy damage and numerous casualties.Main sights The Château, built in the eleventh century over remains of a Carolingian edifice. It has five towers, only one of which has kept its original conical roof. The vaulted rooms and the chapel have thirteenth century decorations. Once used as a prison, since 2008 it is home to a museum. The Basilica of Notre-Dame, founded in 1100. Of the original building, the piers and the arcades of the nave remain. Romanesque church of St. Martin, enlarged in neo-medieval style during the nineteenth century.Notable people Guy Chantepleure, writer Paul Delaunay, physician and historian Elias Durand, pharmacist and botanist Étiemble, writer Marc Joulaud, politician Édouard Lambert, sports shooter Jean-François Rivière, footballer Romain Salin, footballer Michel Tronchay, priest and historian Élie Sauvage (1814–1871), playwright
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