A journey through time and spirituality

The history of the Abbaye de la Trinité in Vendôme is not only a journey through time, but also an echo of the divine grace that guided its founders.

Around 1032, Geoffroy Martel, son of the Count of Anjou Foulques Nerra, seized the County of Vendôme, marking the birth of the Counts of Vendôme.

Geoffroy, with his wife Agnès de Bourgogne, enlarged the old château to make it their home. One summer evening, a celestial spectacle unfolds before their eyes: three balls of fire fall into a fountain, a phenomenon they interpret as a sign of the Holy Trinity. Inspired, Geoffroy decided to found an abbey on this sacred site.

The church was dedicated in 1040, and construction of the conventual buildings began rapidly, being completed in record time. Geoffroy, in a fit of happiness and generosity, showered the abbey with privileges and riches. He brought back two precious relics from Constantinople: an arm of Saint George and a tear of Christ, attracting pilgrims from far and wide from the Middle Ages until the Revolution, when the relic disappeared.

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This Tear, shed by Christ on the death of Lazarus, became a symbol of healing for eye diseases and explains the many representations of Lazarus' resurrection in the church. The Counts of Vendôme, grateful for these relics, adopted war cries in their honor: "Sainte Larme, Vendôme!" and "Saint Georges, Vendôme!".

The Benedictine abbey, bathed in an aura of wonder and spirituality, enjoyed a rapid and supreme rise to prominence. Geoffroy Martel ensured its independence, reporting only to the Pope, and even succeeded in having it erected as a cardinal abbey.

The present abbey church, a jewel of the flamboyant Gothic style, preserves its magnificent 12th-century bell tower, 80 meters high, which inspired the Vieux clocher of Chartres cathedral. The delicately crafted facade dates from the 16th century, while the nave is a 14th-century legacy.