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1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/St Benoît-sur-Loire

ST BENOÎT-SUR-LOIRE, a village of north-central France, in the department of Loiret, on the right bank of the Loire, 22 m. E.S.E. of Orléans by road. St Benoît (Lat. Floriacum) possesses a huge basilica, the only survival of a famous monastery founded in the 7th century to which the relics of St Benedict were brought from Monte Cassino. Of great importance during the middle ages, owing partly to its school, the establishment began to decline in the 16th century. In 1562 it was pillaged by the Protestants and, though the buildings were restored by Richelieu, the abbey did not recover its former position. The basilica was built between c. 1025 and 1218. Its narthex has a second storey supported on columns with remarkable carved capitals; there are two sets of transepts, above which rises a square central tower. In the interior are the tomb of Philip I., stalls of the 15th century, and, in the crypt, a modern shrine containing the remains of St Benedict, which still attract many pilgrims.