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OFFICE DE TOURISME
Place du clos
83440 MONTAUROUX
Tél. : 04 94 47 75 90
Fax : 04 94 47 61 97
montauroux@paysdefayence.com

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Although evidence of settlements has been found dating from pre-historic times (celtic-ligurian) and from the roman era (the acquaduct from Mons to Frejus), the history of Montauroux dates really from 1044 AD when Pierre d'Aurosa selected this rocky peak. He considered the position sdtrategically ideal, between the foothills of the Alps to the North and the ancien Via Aurelia to the South, to the East the river Siagne and to the West the line of perched villages of the region of Fayence.

The Lord Pierre d'Aurosawa member of an order of knights who had the confidence of the Church to protect the peasantry living on far off ecclesiastical lands.

Having built his castle on a rock dominating the surrounding arable land, Pierre d'Aurosa built a church and encouraged the settlement of peasants in the caves at the foot of the promontory and all around the church.

Thus the castle-town of Montauroux developed serenely and little by little towards the South, and under the feudal system a rural middle class gradually emerged.

It's in the 14th century that its history became somewhat agitated, when natural disasters ravaged crops leading to famine, then an outbreak of the plague, not to mention Provence falling into new hands.
Faced by attempts of the King of France to annexe Provence, the local lords built fortifications.
Montauroux already had the basics with its large square tower surrounded by an enclosing wall and in 1365 the fortress was enlarged and ramparts were built around the village.
The 15th century was comparatively peaceful and saw the settlement of competing princely claims, but the with the wars of religion Montauroux experienced its darkest hours. With the army of Savoy approaching, King Henry IV of Navarre despatched Jean Nogaret de la Valette, Duke of Epernon, to protect Provence. But overcome by a thirst for power and ambition, Epernon betrayed the King, set siege to Montauroux, had almost all the defenders of the town hung, and razed the fortress. Ever since,the people of Montauroux, having a long memory, burn an effigy of the Duke every year on the occasion of the feast of St Barthelemy.

After these terrible times the 17th century was relatively prosperous for all and saw the condtruction of a chapel dedicated to St Barthelemy on the site of the old fortress. Montauroux was also elevated in standing thanks to the Marquis Charles of Lombardy who adopted the name and financed the building of a hospital and a chapel at Colle Narbonne (called Colle Noire today) for during a long period, Montauroux wa a halt on the pilgrims route to St Jacques of compostelle.

The 19th century was one of considerable development for Montauroux, notably the paving of roads between 1589/1862 and the installation of a water supply by fountains in 1867 and later, the construction of communal washhouses, followed in 1890 by the inauguration of the first railway line from Montauroux to Grasse.

Untouched by the French Revolution, the people of Montauroux brought about their own revolution much later when the threw off allegiance to the Marquis of Lombardy, for which the paid a heavy tribute in lives and prisoners durin World War 1.

Agriculture was always the main economic activity of Montauroux (wine growing, cerals, fruits and olives) but also sheeps-raising to supply the tanneries at Grasse, and more recently flower production for the perfume factories of Grasse.
In the past there was also coal and fluorine mining activities which provided employment for loggers, bootmakers, and other craftsmen in the locality. In 1931, Montauroux was in part divided and this gave birth to the meighbouring commune known as Les Adrets de l'Esterel.

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