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Another St Clair village Postal Code 82400 on the River Garonne in the
French département of Tarn-et-Garonne.
The village purportedly gets its name from the first Nantes' bishop (3rd
century). It nestles in the heart of a woody countryside, on the north side
of Barguelonne valley. Other local tradition dating from the twelfth century
attributes the foundation of the see of Albi to St. Clarus who was of
African birth and installed his disciple Anthimus as his successor. St
Clarus went to Lectoure where he was beheaded. Do Claris always lose their
People settled in Colonge since Gallo-Roman's times, as shown by its name
(probably the indication of a farm) and by its location on the Roman way
along Barguelonne valley. Dedicated to Saint Mary Madeleine, alterations
were made to Colonge's church on XVIth century.
The town Saint-Clair was known as "de Robillo" in old deeds (today it is
called "Roubillous"). Philippe le Bel, King of France, to Edward the first,
King of England, surrendered the town in 1287 AD. The parish is in the see
Wall bases and a gate on the graveyard side remain of the Roman church.
Rebuilt after Hundred Years' War, it was demolished and ruined during wars
of religion. Built one more time on 16th century, the church had been
restored last century.
The very old church of Sigouhac (to St Vincent de Lespinasse) was sold in
1809 to pay the main church's restorations. The other church on St Clair' s
area is in Colonge.
Nantes itself came into history with the Edict of Nantes.
In 1598 AD, a decree promulgated at Nantes by King Henry IV to restore
internal peace in France, which had been torn by the Wars of Religion; the
edict defined the rights of the French Protestants. These included full
liberty of conscience and private worship; liberty of public worship
wherever it had previously been granted and its extension to numerous other
localities and to estates of Protestant nobles; full civil rights including
the right to hold public office; royal subsidies for Protestant schools;
special courts, composed of Roman Catholic and Protestant judges, to judge
cases involving Protestants; retention of the organization of the Protestant
church in France; and Protestant control of some 200 cities then held by the
Louis, by the grace of God king of France and Navarre reduced the Edict to a
worthless scrap of paper. The result was that many French Protestants among
them numerous St Clairs and Jaquets emigrated to England and English North
American mid- Atlantic English colonies. Chasing genealogical records can
twist the route to Dinnar, St Malo, Normandy and William's Penn's three
lower counties along the River Delaware.
Thousands fled abroad to escape and several French provinces were
practically depopulated. The revocation of the Edict of Nantes weakened the
French economy by driving out a highly skilled and industrious segment of
the nation, and its ruthless application increased the detestation in which
England and the Protestant German states held the French king. The stated
object was to make France a Catholic state was fulfilled on paper. Many
secretly remained faithful to Protestantism, The standing of the Roman
Catholic Church suffered as an effect of Louis's fanaticism.
God has never caused a war. Religion has caused more than one. If churches
put a tenth of the time they spend on the prevention of sex towards the
deterrence of war we would live in a better world.
Ref: J.H. Robinson, ed. Readings in European History 1906
The Catholic Encyclopaedia, Volume 1
W. J. Stankiewicz, Politics and Religion in Seventeenth Century France 1960
Norman Davies, Europe a History 1996
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