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C o n c i s e
H i s t o r y
o f
R e n n e s - l e - C h â t e a u
I Romans in southern gaul
The Celts settle in Gaul around 1000 BC. The Romans conquer
Southern Gaul in 154 BC. They annex it to the Empire in 118 BC. The
Roman province of Gallia Narbonensis is instituted in 13 BC. The
names "Pagus Redensi" and "Rhedae" stem from "Redones", a Gallic
tribe which had settled in the valleys of the river Aude.
The Romans land at Massilia2 in 154 BC and conquer Southern Gaul.
They annex it to the Empire in 118 BC, then unite it with Northern Gaul
after Julius Caesar's conquest in 51 BC.
Emperor Augustus divides Gaul into 4 provinces: Galliae Belgica,
Lugdunensis, Aquitania and Narbonensis, the latter with Narbo Martius3
as civitas4 and main Roman port on the Mediterranean.
154-51 BC
Southern Gaul becomes a desired retirement destination for thousands of
settlers originating from the conquered territories, among which numerous
foreign veterans who had joined the Roman legions.
Rennes-les-Bains was already a spa resort in Roman times: ruins of
thermal baths have been discovered there since the 18th c.
Atax meaning Aude in latin.
County town.
Land of the Redones.
Rennes, later Rennes-le-Château.
The medieval fiefdom of which Rhedae became the county seat.
Through the Edict of Milan in 313, emperor Constantine I declares freedom of
religion throughout the Empire.
From 324 to 330, he rebuilds the ancient greek city of Byzantium as a second
imperial capital and renames it Constantinople.10
Christianism becomes state religion under Emperor Theodosius.
In Roman Gaul, the administrative hierarchy instituted under
Diocletian falls apart with Christianism becoming official.
From now on, christian clerics exercise both civil and religious
authority and the diocese, headed by an archbishop, becomes
the basic territorial jurisdiction.
This type of administration will prevail in the southern provinces until
Charles the Bald establishes the hereditary system of fiefs through the
Quierzy Capitulary in 877.
At the death of Theodosius I, the Roman Empire is split into Western and
Eastern Empires, with Rome and Constantinople as respective capitals.
Theodosius' son Flavius Honorius (384-423) becomes the first Western
Roman Emperor.
Flavius Honorius leaves Rome and moves his capital to Ravenna.11
Gallia Narbonensis Prima (civitas Narbonne) and Gallia Narbonensis
Secunda (civitas Aix) include roughly today's départements of Bouchesdu-Rhône, Gard, Lozère, Hérault and Aude; the three Galliae Aquitaniae
(civitates Bourges, Bordeaux and Eauze) include today's régions of
Aquitaine, Midi-Pyrénées, Poitou-Charentes, Limousin and Auvergne as
well as the areas of Pays de la Loire and Centre south of the river Loire.
! See map 1
Gallia Narbonensis includes the Pagus Redensis5 from which stem the
place names Rhedae6, Rhedesium and later Razès.7
13 BC
Emperor Diocletian re-organises Gaul in 17 provinces.
In Southern Gaul, there are now 2 Galliae
Narbonensis and 3 Galliae Aquitania, under the
authority of praesides8 and duces.9
The Celts settle in Occidental Europe. Gaul derives from Galates, the
name by which the Celts are called by the Greeks, who already have
trading posts around the Mediterranean.
The Volques, a tribe originating from Gallia Belgica (same etymology),
settle in lower Languedoc. The Redones settle in the mid- and high
valleys of the river Aude, the areas around Peyrepertuse and Fenouillet
and in the country of Sault.
The Romans call them collectively Atacians.1
L a n g u e d o c
1000-400 BC
i n
Civil administrators.
Military governors.
Today's Istambul.
Situated in the Italian province of Emilia-Romagna.
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