A monastery is a building or complex of buildings comprising the domestic quarters and workplaces of monastics, monks or nuns, whether living in communities or alone. A monastery includes a place reserved for prayer which may be a chapel, church, or temple, may serve as an oratory. Monasteries vary in size, comprising a small dwelling accommodating only a hermit, or in the case of communities anything from a single building housing only one senior and two or three junior monks or nuns, to vast complexes and estates housing tens or hundreds. A monastery complex comprises a number of buildings which include a church, cloister, library and infirmary. Depending on the location, the monastic order and the occupation of its inhabitants, the complex may include a wide range of buildings that facilitate self-sufficiency and service to the community; these may include a hospice, a school, a range of agricultural and manufacturing buildings such as a barn, a forge, or a brewery. In English usage, the term monastery is used to denote the buildings of a community of monks.
In modern usage, convent tends to be applied only to institutions of female monastics communities of teaching or nursing religious sisters. A convent denoted a house of friars, now more called a friary. Various religions may apply these terms in more specific ways; the word monastery comes from the Greek word μοναστήριον, neut. of μοναστήριος – monasterios from μονάζειν – monazein "to live alone" from the root μόνος – monos "alone". The earliest extant use of the term monastērion is by the 1st century AD Jewish philosopher Philo in On The Contemplative Life, ch. III. In England the word monastery was applied to the habitation of a bishop and the cathedral clergy who lived apart from the lay community. Most cathedrals were not monasteries, were served by canons secular, which were communal but not monastic. However, some were run by monasteries orders, such as York Minster. Westminster Abbey was for a short time a cathedral, was a Benedictine monastery until the Reformation, its Chapter preserves elements of the Benedictine tradition.
See the entry cathedral. They are to be distinguished from collegiate churches, such as St George's Chapel, Windsor. In most of this article, the term monastery is used generically to refer to any of a number of types of religious community. In the Roman Catholic religion and to some extent in certain branches of Buddhism, there is a somewhat more specific definition of the term and many related terms. Buddhist monasteries are called vihara. Viharas may be occupied by men or women, in keeping with common English usage, a vihara populated by females may be called a nunnery or a convent. However, vihara can refer to a temple. In Tibetan Buddhism, monasteries are called gompa. In Thailand and Cambodia, a monastery is called a wat. In Burma, a monastery is called a kyaung. A Christian monastery may be a priory, or conceivably a hermitage, it may be a community of men or of women. A charterhouse is any monastery belonging to the Carthusian order. In Eastern Christianity, a small monastic community can be called a skete, a large or important monastery can be given the dignity of a lavra.
The great communal life of a Christian monastery is called cenobitic, as opposed to the anchoretic life of an anchorite and the eremitic life of a hermit. There has been under the Osmanli occupation of Greece and Cyprus, an "idiorrhythmic" lifestyle where monks come together but being able to own things individually and not being obliged to work for the common good. In Hinduism monasteries are called matha, koil, or most an ashram. Jains use the Buddhist term vihara. In most religions the life inside monasteries is governed by community rules that stipulate the gender of the inhabitants and require them to remain celibate and own little or no personal property; the degree to which life inside a particular monastery is separate from the surrounding populace can vary widely. Others focus on interacting with the local communities to provide services, such as teaching, medical care, or evangelism; some monastic communities are only occupied seasonally, depending both on the traditions involved and the local weather, people may be part of a monastic community for periods ranging from a few days at a time to an entire lifetime.
The life within the walls of a monastery may be supported in several ways: by manufacturing and selling goods agricultural products, by donations or alms, by rental or investment incomes, by funds from other organizations within the religion, which in the past formed the traditional support of monasteries. There has been a long tradition of Christian monasteries providing hospitable and hospital services. Monasteries have been associated with the provision of education and the encouragement of scholarship and research, which has led to the establishment of schools and colleges and the association with universities. Christian monastic life has adapted to modern society by offering computer services, accounting services and management as well as modern hospital and educational administration. Buddhist monasteries, known as vihāra i
Georges Braque was a major 20th-century French painter, draughtsman and sculptor. His most important contributions to the history of art were in his alliance with Fauvism from 1906, the role he played in the development of Cubism. Braque’s work between 1908 and 1912 is associated with that of his colleague Pablo Picasso, their respective Cubist works were indistinguishable for many years, yet the quiet nature of Braque was eclipsed by the fame and notoriety of Picasso. Georges Braque was born on 13 May 1882 in Val-d'Oise, he grew up in Le Havre and trained to be a house painter and decorator like his father and grandfather. However, he studied artistic painting during evenings at the École des Beaux-Arts, in Le Havre, from about 1897 to 1899. In Paris, he apprenticed with a decorator and was awarded his certificate in 1902; the next year, he attended the Académie Humbert in Paris, painted there until 1904. It was here that he met Francis Picabia. Braque's earliest works were impressionistic, but after seeing the work exhibited by the artistic group known as the "Fauves" in 1905, he adopted a Fauvist style.
The Fauves, a group that included Henri Matisse and André Derain among others, used brilliant colors to represent emotional response. Braque worked most with the artists Raoul Dufy and Othon Friesz, who shared Braque's hometown of Le Havre, to develop a somewhat more subdued Fauvist style. In 1906, Braque traveled with Friesz to L'Estaque, to Antwerp, home to Le Havre to paint. In May 1907, he exhibited works of the Fauve style in the Salon des Indépendants; the same year, Braque's style began a slow evolution as he became influenced by Paul Cézanne who had died in 1906 and whose works were exhibited in Paris for the first time in a large-scale, museum-like retrospective in September 1907. The 1907 Cézanne retrospective at the Salon d'Automne affected the avant-garde artists of Paris, resulting in the advent of Cubism. Braque's paintings of 1908–1912 reflected his new interest in geometry and simultaneous perspective, he conducted an intense study of the effects of light and perspective and the technical means that painters use to represent these effects, seeming to question the most standard of artistic conventions.
In his village scenes, for example, Braque reduced an architectural structure to a geometric form approximating a cube, yet rendered its shading so that it looked both flat and three-dimensional by fragmenting the image. He showed this in the painting Houses at l'Estaque. Beginning in 1909, Braque began to work with Pablo Picasso, developing a similar proto-Cubist style of painting. At the time, Pablo Picasso was influenced by Gauguin, Cézanne, African masks and Iberian sculpture while Braque was interested in developing Cézanne's ideas of multiple perspectives. “A comparison of the works of Picasso and Braque during 1908 reveals that the effect of his encounter with Picasso was more to accelerate and intensify Braque’s exploration of Cézanne’s ideas, rather than to divert his thinking in any essential way.” Braque’s essential subject is the ordinary objects he has known forever. Picasso celebrates animation. Thus, the invention of Cubism was a joint effort between Picasso and Braque residents of Montmartre, Paris.
These artists were the style's main innovators. After meeting in October or November 1907, Braque and Picasso, in particular, began working on the development of Cubism in 1908. Both artists produced paintings of monochromatic color and complex patterns of faceted form, now termed Analytic Cubism. A decisive time of its development occurred during the summer of 1911, when Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso painted side by side in Céret in the French Pyrenees, each artist producing paintings that are difficult—sometimes impossible—to distinguish from those of the other. In 1912, they began to experiment with collage and Braque invented the papier collé technique. On 14 November 1908, the French art critic Louis Vauxcelles, in his review of Georges Braque's exhibition at Kahnweiler's gallery called Braque a daring man who despises form, "reducing everything, places and a figures and houses, to geometric schemas, to cubes". Vauxcelles, on 25 March 1909, used the terms "bizarreries cubiques" after seeing a painting by Braque at the Salon des Indépendants.
The term'Cubism', first pronounced in 1911 with reference to artists exhibiting at the Salon des Indépendants gained wide use but Picasso and Braque did not adopt it initially. Art historian Ernst Gombrich described Cubism as "the most radical attempt to stamp out ambiguity and to enforce one reading of the picture—that of a man-made construction, a colored canvas." The Cubist style spread throughout Paris and Europe. The two artists' productive collaboration continued and they worked together until the beginning of World War I in 1914, when Braque enlisted with the French Army. In May 1915, Braque received a severe head injury in battle at Carency and suffered temporary blindness, he was trepanned, required a long period of recuperation. The things that Picasso and I said to one another during those years will never be said again, if they were, no one would understand them anymore, it was like being roped together on a mountain. Braque resumed painting in late 1916. Working alone, he began to moderate the harsh abstraction of cubism.
He developed a more personal style characterized by brilliant color, textured surfaces, and—after his relocation to the Normandy seacoast—the reappearance of the human figure. He painted many still life subjects during this time, maintaining his e
The French Revolution was a period of far-reaching social and political upheaval in France and its colonies beginning in 1789. The Revolution overthrew the monarchy, established a republic, catalyzed violent periods of political turmoil, culminated in a dictatorship under Napoleon who brought many of its principles to areas he conquered in Western Europe and beyond. Inspired by liberal and radical ideas, the Revolution profoundly altered the course of modern history, triggering the global decline of absolute monarchies while replacing them with republics and liberal democracies. Through the Revolutionary Wars, it unleashed a wave of global conflicts that extended from the Caribbean to the Middle East. Historians regard the Revolution as one of the most important events in human history; the causes of the French Revolution are still debated among historians. Following the Seven Years' War and the American Revolution, the French government was in debt, it attempted to restore its financial status through unpopular taxation schemes, which were regressive.
Leading up to the Revolution, years of bad harvests worsened by deregulation of the grain industry and environmental problems inflamed popular resentment of the privileges enjoyed by the aristocracy and the Catholic clergy of the established church. Some historians hold something similar to what Thomas Jefferson proclaimed: that France had "been awakened by our Revolution." Demands for change were formulated in terms of Enlightenment ideals and contributed to the convocation of the Estates General in May 1789. During the first year of the Revolution, members of the Third Estate took control, the Bastille was attacked in July, the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen was passed in August, the Women's March on Versailles forced the royal court back to Paris in October. A central event of the first stage, in August 1789, was the abolition of feudalism and the old rules and privileges left over from the Ancien Régime; the next few years featured political struggles between various liberal assemblies and right-wing supporters of the monarchy intent on thwarting major reforms.
The Republic was proclaimed in September 1792 after the French victory at Valmy. In a momentous event that led to international condemnation, Louis XVI was executed in January 1793. External threats shaped the course of the Revolution; the Revolutionary Wars beginning in 1792 featured French victories that facilitated the conquest of the Italian Peninsula, the Low Countries and most territories west of the Rhine – achievements that had eluded previous French governments for centuries. Internally, popular agitation radicalised the Revolution culminating in the rise of Maximilien Robespierre and the Jacobins; the dictatorship imposed by the Committee of Public Safety during the Reign of Terror, from 1793 until 1794, established price controls on food and other items, abolished slavery in French colonies abroad, de-established the Catholic church and created a secular Republican calendar, religious leaders were expelled, the borders of the new republic were secured from its enemies. After the Thermidorian Reaction, an executive council known as the Directory assumed control of the French state in 1795.
They suspended elections, repudiated debts, persecuted the Catholic clergy, made significant military conquests abroad. Dogged by charges of corruption, the Directory collapsed in a coup led by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1799. Napoleon, who became the hero of the Revolution through his popular military campaigns, established the Consulate and the First Empire, setting the stage for a wider array of global conflicts in the Napoleonic Wars; the modern era has unfolded in the shadow of the French Revolution. All future revolutionary movements looked back to the Revolution as their predecessor, its central phrases and cultural symbols, such as La Marseillaise and Liberté, fraternité, égalité, ou la mort, became the clarion call for other major upheavals in modern history, including the Russian Revolution over a century later. The values and institutions of the Revolution dominate French politics to this day; the Revolution resulted in the suppression of the feudal system, emancipation of the individual, a greater division of landed property, abolition of the privileges of noble birth, nominal establishment of equality among men.
The French Revolution differed from other revolutions in being not only national, for it intended to benefit all humanity. Globally, the Revolution accelerated the rise of democracies, it became the focal point for the development of most modern political ideologies, leading to the spread of liberalism, radicalism and secularism, among many others. The Revolution witnessed the birth of total war by organising the resources of France and the lives of its citizens towards the objective of military conquest; some of its central documents, such as the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, continued to inspire movements for abolitionism and universal suffrage in the next century. Historians have pointed to many events and factors within the Ancien Régime that led to the Revolution. Rising social and economic inequality, new political ideas emerging from the Enlightenment, economic mismanagement, environmental factors leading to agricultural failure, unmanageable national debt, political mismanagement on the part of King Louis XVI have all been cited as laying the groundwork for the Revolution.
Over the course of the 18th century, there emerged what the philosopher Jürgen Habermas called the idea of the "public sphere" in France and elsewhere
Communes of France
The commune is a level of administrative division in the French Republic. French communes are analogous to civil townships and incorporated municipalities in the United States and Canada, Gemeinden in Germany, comuni in Italy or ayuntamiento in Spain; the United Kingdom has no exact equivalent, as communes resemble districts in urban areas, but are closer to parishes in rural areas where districts are much larger. Communes are based on historical geographic communities or villages and are vested with significant powers to manage the populations and land of the geographic area covered; the communes are the fourth-level administrative divisions of France. Communes vary in size and area, from large sprawling cities with millions of inhabitants like Paris, to small hamlets with only a handful of inhabitants. Communes are based on pre-existing villages and facilitate local governance. All communes have names, but not all named geographic areas or groups of people residing together are communes, the difference residing in the lack of administrative powers.
Except for the municipal arrondissements of its largest cities, the communes are the lowest level of administrative division in France and are governed by elected officials with extensive autonomous powers to implement national policy. A commune is city, or other municipality. "Commune" in English has a historical bias, implies an association with socialist political movements or philosophies, collectivist lifestyles, or particular history. There is nothing intrinsically different between commune in French; the French word commune appeared in the 12th century, from Medieval Latin communia, for a large gathering of people sharing a common life. As of January 2015, there were 36,681 communes in France, 36,552 of them in metropolitan France and 129 of them overseas; this is a higher total than that of any other European country, because French communes still reflect the division of France into villages or parishes at the time of the French Revolution. The whole territory of the French Republic is divided into communes.
This is unlike some other countries, such as the United States, where unincorporated areas directly governed by a county or a higher authority can be found. There are only a few exceptions: COM of Saint-Martin, it was a commune inside the Guadeloupe région. The commune structure was abolished when Saint-Martin became an overseas collectivity on 22 February 2007. COM of Wallis and Futuna, which still is divided according to the three traditional chiefdoms. COM of Saint Barthélemy, it was a commune inside the Guadeloupe region. The commune structure was abolished when Saint-Barthélemy became an overseas collectivity on 22 February 2007. Furthermore, two regions without permanent habitation have no communes: TOM of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands Clipperton Island in the Pacific Ocean In metropolitan France, the average area of a commune in 2004 was 14.88 square kilometres. The median area of metropolitan France's communes at the 1999 census was smaller, at 10.73 square kilometres. The median area is a better measure of the area of a typical French commune.
This median area is smaller than that of most European countries. In Italy, the median area of communes is 22 km2. Switzerland and the Länder of Rhineland-Palatinate, Schleswig-Holstein, Thuringia in Germany were the only places in Europe where the communes had a smaller median area than in France; the communes of France's overseas départements such as Réunion and French Guiana are large by French standards. They group into the same commune several villages or towns with sizeable distances among them. In Réunion, demographic expansion and sprawling urbanization have resulted in the administrative splitting of some communes; the median population of metropolitan France's communes at the 1999 census was 380 inhabitants. Again this is a small number, here France stands apart in Europe, with the lowest communes' median population of all the European countries; this small median population of French communes can be compared with Italy, where the median population of communes in 2001 was 2,343 inhabitants, Belgium, or Spain.
The median population given here should not hide the fact that there are pronounced differences in size between French communes. As mentioned in the introduction, a commune can be a city of 2 million inhabitants such as Paris, a town of 10,000 inhabitants, or just a hamlet of 10 inhabitants. What the median population tells us is that the vast majority of the French communes only have a few hundred inhabitants. In metropolitan France just over 50 percent of the 36,683 communes have fewer than 500 inhabitants a
Oscar-Claude Monet was a French painter, a founder of French Impressionist painting and the most consistent and prolific practitioner of the movement's philosophy of expressing one's perceptions before nature as applied to plein air landscape painting. The term "Impressionism" is derived from the title of his painting Impression, soleil levant, exhibited in 1874 in the first of the independent exhibitions mounted by Monet and his associates as an alternative to the Salon de Paris. Monet's ambition of documenting the French countryside led him to adopt a method of painting the same scene many times in order to capture the changing of light and the passing of the seasons. From 1883, Monet lived in Giverny, where he purchased a house and property and began a vast landscaping project which included lily ponds that would become the subjects of his best-known works. In 1899, he began painting the water lilies, first in vertical views with a Japanese bridge as a central feature and in the series of large-scale paintings, to occupy him continuously for the next 20 years of his life.
Claude Monet was born on 14 November 1840 on the fifth floor of 45 rue Laffitte, in the 9th arrondissement of Paris. He was the second son of Claude Adolphe Monet and Louise Justine Aubrée Monet, both of them second-generation Parisians. On 20 May 1841, he was baptized in the local parish church, Notre-Dame-de-Lorette, as Oscar-Claude, but his parents called him Oscar. Despite being baptized Catholic, Monet became an atheist. In 1845, his family moved to Le Havre in Normandy, his father wanted him to go into the family's ship-chandling and grocery business, but Monet wanted to become an artist. His mother was a singer, supported Monet's desire for a career in art. On 1 April 1851, Monet entered Le Havre secondary school of the arts. Locals knew him well for his charcoal caricatures. Monet undertook his first drawing lessons from Jacques-François Ochard, a former student of Jacques-Louis David. On the beaches of Normandy around 1856 he met fellow artist Eugène Boudin, who became his mentor and taught him to use oil paints.
Boudin taught Monet "en plein air" techniques for painting. Both received the influence of Johan Barthold Jongkind. On 28 January 1857, his mother died. At the age of sixteen, he left school and went to live with his widowed, childless aunt, Marie-Jeanne Lecadre; when Monet traveled to Paris to visit the Louvre, he witnessed painters copying from the old masters. Having brought his paints and other tools with him, he would instead go and sit by a window and paint what he saw. Monet was in Paris for several years and met other young painters, including Édouard Manet and others who would become friends and fellow Impressionists. After drawing a low ballot number in March 1861, Monet was drafted into the First Regiment of African Light Cavalry in Algeria for a seven-year period of military service, his prosperous father could have purchased Monet's exemption from conscription but declined to do so when his son refused to give up painting. While in Algeria Monet did only a few sketches of casbah scenes, a single landscape, several portraits of officers, all of which have been lost.
In a Le Temps interview of 1900 however he commented that the light and vivid colours of North Africa "contained the germ of my future researches". After about a year of garrison duty in Algiers, Monet contracted typhoid fever and went absent without leave. Following convalescence, Monet's aunt intervened to remove him from the army if he agreed to complete a course at an art school, it is possible that the Dutch painter Johan Barthold Jongkind, whom Monet knew, may have prompted his aunt on this matter. Disillusioned with the traditional art taught at art schools, in 1862 Monet became a student of Charles Gleyre in Paris, where he met Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Frédéric Bazille and Alfred Sisley. Together they shared new approaches to art, painting the effects of light en plein air with broken colour and rapid brushstrokes, in what came to be known as Impressionism. In January 1865 Monet was working on a version of Le déjeuner sur l'herbe, aiming to present it for hanging at the Salon, which had rejected Manet's Le déjeuner sur l'herbe two years earlier.
Monet's painting was large and could not be completed in time. Monet submitted instead a painting of Camille or The Woman in the Green Dress, one of many works using his future wife, Camille Doncieux, as his model. Both this painting and a small landscape were hung; the following year Monet used Camille for his model in Women in the Garden, On the Bank of the Seine, Bennecourt in 1868. Camille became pregnant and gave birth to their first child, Jean, in 1867. Monet and Camille married on 28 June 1870, just before the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War, after their excursion to London and Zaandam, they moved to Argenteuil, in December 1871. During this time Monet painted various works of modern life, he and Camille lived in poverty for most of this period. Following the successful exhibition of some maritime paintings, the winning of a silver medal at Le Havre, Monet's paintings were seized by creditors, from whom they were bought back by a shipping merchant, a patron of Boudin. From the late 1860s, Monet and other like-minded artists met with rejection from the conservative Académie des Beaux-Arts, which held its annual exhibition at the Salon de Paris.
During the latter part of 1873, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro, Alfred Sisley organized the Société anonyme des
Peter Abelard was a medieval French scholastic philosopher and preeminent logician. His love for, affair with, Héloïse d'Argenteuil has become legendary; the Chambers Biographical Dictionary describes him as "the keenest thinker and boldest theologian of the 12th Century". Abelard called "Pierre le Pallet", was born c. 1079 in Le Pallet, about 10 miles east of Nantes, in Brittany, the eldest son of a minor noble French family. As a boy, he learned quickly, his father, a knight called Berenger, encouraged Pierre to study the liberal arts, wherein he excelled at the art of dialectic, which, at that time, consisted chiefly of the logic of Aristotle transmitted through Latin channels. Instead of entering a military career, as his father had done, Abelard became an academic. During his early academic pursuits, Abelard wandered throughout France and learning, so as "he became such a one as the Peripatetics." He first studied in the Loire area, where the nominalist Roscellinus of Compiègne, accused of heresy by Anselm, was his teacher during this period.
Around 1100, Abelard's travels brought him to Paris. In the great cathedral school of Notre-Dame de Paris, he was taught for a while by William of Champeaux, the disciple of Anselm of Laon, a leading proponent of Realism. During this time he changed his surname to "Abelard", sometimes written "Abailard" or "Abaelardus". Retrospectively, Abelard portrays William as having turned from approval to hostility when Abelard proved soon able to defeat the master in argument, and William thought. It was during this time that Abelard would provoke quarrels with both Roscellinus. Against opposition from the metropolitan teacher, Abelard set up his own school, first at Melun, a favoured royal residence around 1102-4, for more direct competition, he moved to Corbeil, nearer Paris, his teaching was notably successful, though for a time he had to give it up and spend time in Brittany, the strain proving too great for his constitution. On his return, after 1108, he found William lecturing at the hermitage of Saint-Victor, just outside the Île de la Cité, there they once again became rivals, with Abelard challenging William over his theory of universals.
Abelard was once more victorious, Abelard was able to hold the position of master at Notre Dame. For a short time, William was able to prevent Abelard from lecturing in Paris. Abelard accordingly was forced to resume his school at Melun, which he was able to move, from c. 1110-12, to Paris itself, on the heights of Montagne Sainte-Geneviève, overlooking Notre-Dame. From his success in dialectic, he next turned to theology and in 1113 moved to Laon to attend the lectures of Anselm on Biblical exegesis and Christian doctrine. Unimpressed by Anselm's teaching, Abelard began to offer his own lectures on the book of Ezekiel. Anselm forbade him to continue this teaching, Abelard returned to Paris where, in around 1115, he became master of Notre Dame and a canon of Sens. Distinguished in figure and manners, Abelard was seen surrounded by crowds – it is said thousands of students – drawn from all countries by the fame of his teaching. Enriched by the offerings of his pupils, entertained with universal admiration, he came, as he says, to think himself the only undefeated philosopher in the world.
But a change in his fortunes was at hand. In his devotion to science, he had always lived a regular life, enlivened only by philosophical debate: now, at the height of his fame, he encountered romance. Héloïse d'Argenteuil lived within the precincts of Notre-Dame, under the care of her uncle, the secular canon Fulbert, she was remarkable for her knowledge of classical letters, which extended beyond Latin to Greek and Hebrew. Abelard, in 1115 or 1116, began an affair with Héloïse; the affair interfered with his career, Abelard himself boasted of his conquest. Once Fulbert found out, he separated them. Héloïse became pregnant and was sent by Abelard to be looked after by his family in Brittany, where she gave birth to a son whom she named Astrolabe after the scientific instrument. To appease Fulbert, Abelard proposed a secret marriage. Héloïse opposed it, but the couple were married; when Fulbert publicly disclosed the marriage, Héloïse denied it, Abelard sent Héloïse to the convent at Argenteuil, where she had been brought up, in order to protect her from her uncle.
Héloïse shared the nun's life, though she was not veiled. Fulbert, most believing that Abelard wanted to be rid of Héloïse by forcing her to become a nun, arranged for a band of men to break into Abelard's room one night and castrate him. Roscellinus would belittle Abelard for getting castrated. Abelard decided to become a monk at the monastery of St Denis, near Paris. Before doing so he insisted. Héloïse sent letters to Abelard, questioning why she must submit to a religious life for which she had no calling. In the Abbey of Saint-Denis, the 40-year-old Abelard sought to bury himself as a monk with his woes out of sight. Finding no respite in the cloister, having turned again to study, he gave in to urgent entreaties, reopened his school at an unknown priory owned by the monastery, his lectures, now framed in a devotiona
Departments of France
In the administrative divisions of France, the department is one of the three levels of government below the national level, between the administrative regions and the commune. Ninety-six departments are in metropolitan France, five are overseas departments, which are classified as regions. Departments are further subdivided into 334 arrondissements, themselves divided into cantons; each department is administered by an elected body called a departmental council. From 1800 to April 2015, these were called general councils; each council has a president. Their main areas of responsibility include the management of a number of social and welfare allowances, of junior high school buildings and technical staff, local roads and school and rural buses, a contribution to municipal infrastructures. Local services of the state administration are traditionally organised at departmental level, where the prefect represents the government; the departments were created in 1790 as a rational replacement of Ancien Régime provinces with a view to strengthen national unity.
All of them were named after physical geographical features, rather than after historical or cultural territories which could have their own loyalties. The division of France into departments was a project identified with the French revolutionary leader the Abbé Sieyès, although it had been discussed and written about by many politicians and thinkers; the earliest known suggestion of it is from 1764 in the writings of d'Argenson. They have inspired similar divisions in some of them former French colonies. Most French departments are assigned a two-digit number, the "Official Geographical Code", allocated by the Institut national de la statistique et des études économiques. Overseas departments have a three-digit number; the number is used, for example, in the postal code, was until used for all vehicle registration plates. While residents use the numbers to refer to their own department or a neighbouring one, more distant departments are referred to by their names, as few people know the numbers of all the departments.
For example, inhabitants of Loiret might refer to their department as "the 45". In 2014, President François Hollande proposed to abolish departmental councils by 2020, which would have maintained the departments as administrative divisions, to transfer their powers to other levels of governance; this reform project has since been abandoned. The first French territorial departments were proposed in 1665 by Marc-René d'Argenson to serve as administrative areas purely for the Ponts et Chaussées infrastructure administration. Before the French Revolution, France gained territory through the annexation of a mosaic of independent entities. By the close of the Ancien Régime, it was organised into provinces. During the period of the Revolution, these were dissolved in order to weaken old loyalties; the modern departments, as all-purpose units of the government, were created on 4 March 1790 by the National Constituent Assembly to replace the provinces with what the Assembly deemed a more rational structure.
Their boundaries served two purposes: Boundaries were chosen to break up France's historical regions in an attempt to erase cultural differences and build a more homogeneous nation. Boundaries were set so that every settlement in the country was within a day's ride of the capital of a department; this was a security measure, intended to keep the entire national territory under close control. This measure was directly inspired by the Great Terror, during which the government had lost control of many rural areas far from any centre of government; the old nomenclature was avoided in naming the new departments. Most were named after other physical features. Paris was in the department of Seine. Savoy became the department of Mont-Blanc; the number of departments 83, had been increased to 130 by 1809 with the territorial gains of the Republic and of the First French Empire. Following Napoleon's defeats in 1814–1815, the Congress of Vienna returned France to its pre-war size and the number of departments was reduced to 86.
In 1860, France acquired the County of Nice and Savoy, which led to the creation of three new departments. Two were added from the new Savoyard territory, while the department of Alpes-Maritimes was created from Nice and a portion of the Var department; the 89 departments were given numbers based on the alphabetical order of their names. The department of Bas-Rhin and parts of Meurthe, Moselle and Haut-Rhin were ceded to the German Empire in 1871, following France's defeat in the Franco-Prussian War. A small part of Haut-Rhin became known as the Territoire de Belfort; when France regained the ceded departments after World War I, the Territoire de Belfort was not re-integrated into Haut-Rhin. In 1922, it became France's 90th department; the Lorraine departments were not changed back to their original boundaries, a new Moselle department was created in the regaine