Noyon

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Noyon

Coordinates: 49°34′54″N 2°59′59″E / 49.5816666667°N 2.99972222222°E / 49.5816666667; 2.99972222222


Noyon (Latin: Noviomagus Veromanduorum) is a commune in the Oise department in northern France.

It lies on the Oise Canal, 100 km (approximately 60 miles) north of Paris.

Contents

History

The Gallo-Romans founded the town as Noviomagus. Supposedly also known as Veromanduorum to distinguish it from numerous other places of the same name, though no Roman source can prove it.[1] The town is mentioned in the Antonine Itinerary as being 27 M.P. from Soissons, and 34 M.P. from Amiens. But their distances are not exact, as the 18th-century geographer Jean Baptiste Bourguignon d'Anville remarks, for Noyon is further from Amiens and nearer to Soissons than the itinerary says. The mutation of the name Noviomagus to Noyon is made clearer in Medieval Latin documents, where the town is then called Noviomum.

Noyon was strongly fortified; some sections of the Roman walls still remained in late antiquity. This may explain why, around the year 531, bishop Medardus moved his seat from Vermand, in the Vermandois, to Noyon. Other explanations are that Medardus was born near the town, at Salency, or that the place is nearer to Soissons, which was one of the royal capitals of the Merovingians. The bishop of Noyon was also bishop of Tournai from the seventh century until Tournai was raised to a separate diocese 1146.[2].

The cathedral at Noyon was where the first Holy Roman Emperor Charlemagne was crowned in 768, as too was the first Capetian king, Hugh Capet in 987. The town received a communal charter in 1108, which was later confirmed by Philip Augustus in 1223. In the twelfth century, the diocese of Noyon was raised to an ecclesiastical duchy in the peerage of France. The Romanesque cathedral was destroyed by fire in 1131, but soon replaced by the present cathedral, Notre-Dame de Noyon, constructed between 1145 and 1235, one of the earliest examples of Gothic architecture in France. The bishop's library is a historic example of half-timbered construction.

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