L'Abbatiale de Payerne. Photo/Foto: TES.

Payerne Abbey

The Roman citizen of Aventicum (present-day Avenches), Publius Graccius Paternus, built a villa on his estate, located on the future site of the city of Payerne.

The villa was known as Villa Paternica. A Latin inscription mentions Paternus, probably the origin of the name of the city.

Bishop Marius of Avenches owned the villa in the sixth century. He consecrated a chapel and monastery on this location. Payerne became the city of the coronations of the Burgundian kings (888-1032).

The monastery was was owned by the abbey of Cluny around 960. The abbey was a close ally of the Burgundian kings.

The construction of the abbey church started around 1000. The beautiful frescoes in the narthex were painted in the late twelfth and early thirteenth centuries.

The murals in the Chapelle de Grailly were created in the 15th century, the murals in the Chapel of the Resurrection Chapel (Chapelle de la Résurrection)  in the 13th century.

The abbey and the temple are open to the public. The abbey houses the abbey museum.

(Source and further information: l’Association pour la restauration de l’abbatiale).