The village of Castelnau-de-Montmiral
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Castelnau-de-Montmiral is another "bastide" in the department of Tarn. It is also a member of the "Les Plus Beaux Villages de France" organization.
The "albigeoise" bastide was built in 1222 by the Count of Toulouse, Raymond VII, a cathar sympathizer, during the times of the crusade against the Cathars.
Its name that comes from Occitan language - "Castelnau" means new castle and "mon mirailh" means watch point - reflects its location on the top of a promontory above the river Véze.
The little town has many interesting sites like its beautiful central square, Miramond House that dates from the 16th century, a beautiful statue of the Virgin located on a headland that allows a magnificent panorama of the surrounding countryside.
But the biggest treasure of Castelnau-de-Montmiral is the Golden Cross that holds a piece of the Christ Cross. The Cross that can now be admired in the interior of the Notre-Dame Church is a masterpiece of the religious gold work. The Cross was created by an Albi goldsmith for the 4 governors of the town - the consuls - in 1341. It contains not less than 300 precious stones cast in solid gold.