Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

A celebrated Cistercian abbey situated in the Diocese of Versailles, Seine-et-Oise, in what was called the "Isle-de-France". In 1118 Simon de Neauffle and his wife Eve donated the land for this foundation to the monks of Savigny, in order to have a monastery built there in honour of the Mother of God and St. John Baptist. Blessed Vital, Abbot of Savigny, accepted their offer, and sent a band of monks under the direction of Arnaud, who became their first abbot. Besides their first benefactors, numerous others of the nobility came to the aid of the new community. As soon as they were well established, many postulants presented themselves for admission, rendering possible the foundation of Breuil-Benoit (1137) in the Diocese of Evreu. In 1148 vaux-de-Cernay, with the entire Congregation of Savigny, entered the Order of Cîteaux and became a filiation of Clairvaux. Up to this period their substance was only enough for them to live on, but from this time they became prosperous, built a church in the simple Cistercian style, and little by little, constructed the other regular places. Many of its abbots became well known. Andrew, the fourth, died Bishop of Arras ; Guy, the sixth, was the most celebrated, having been delegated by the General Chapter to accompany the Fifth Crusade in 1203. Three years later he was one of the principal figures in the crusade against the Albigenses, in recognition of which service he was made Bishop of Carcasone (1211) and is commemorated in the Cistercian Menology. His nephew Peter, also a monk of Vaux-de-Cernay, accompanied him on this crusade, and left a history of both the heresy and the war. It was under his successor, Abbot Thoas, that Porrois, a monastery of Cistercian nuns (later on the famous Abbey of Port-Royal ), was founded and placed under the direction of the abbots of Vaux-de-Cernay. The ninth abbot, Thibault de Marley (1235-47), was canonized and worked many miracles both before and after death. Towards the end of the fourteenth century the monastery began losing its fervour, both on account of too great wealth and because of the disturbed state of the times. But after the introduction of commendatory abbots (1542) there was little left besides the name of monks. In the seventeenth century it was restored in spirit by embracing the Reform of the Strict Observance of Denis Largentier. It was during this time that its commendatory abbot was John Casimir, King of Poland. The monastery was suppressed at the revolution (1791) and its members (twelve priests ) dispersed. The buildings, after passing through various hands, are now partly restored and are much admired both by artists and archaeologists.

More Encyclopedia

The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed between 1907 and 1912 in fifteen hard copy volumes.

Catholic Encyclopedia

Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.

No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.

Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912

Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online


Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • St. John The Apostle HD
  • You won't believe what happened to these misguided teens who joined ISIS
  • Clone livestock, racehorses, the family pet - China opens world's ...
  • 'We cannot succumb to fear': U.S. joins France in fight against ISIS
  • St. Catherine of Alexandria: Saint of the Day for Wednesday, November ...
  • St. Patrick HD
  • Daily Readings for Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Daniel 2:31-45
31 'You have had a vision, Your Majesty; this is what you saw: a statue, ... Read More

Psalm, Daniel 3:57, 58, 59, 60, 61
57 Bless the Lord, all the Lord's creation: praise and glorify him for ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 21:5-11
5 When some were talking about the Temple, remarking how it was adorned ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 24th, 2015 Image

St. Andrew Dung Lac
November 24: Through the missionary efforts of various ... Read More