From Gallo-Roman times to the present day, this Briard city on the banks of the Marne river has built up a rich historic heritage.
The cathedral city of Meaux is unique in the Ile-de-France. Built between the 12th and 16th centuries, this masterpiece offers a rich architectural fabric clustered round the Cathedral of Saint Etienne, itself an accomplished illustration of Gothic architecture. A charming garden, attributed to Le Nôtre and designed in the form of a mitre, stretches out from the bishop's palace to the Gallo-Roman town walls.
In the old bishop’s palace, the Bossuet Museum offers a large collection of paintings and sculptures, 16th - 19th century works, and many eye-witness accounts of the famous bishop, Jacques Bénigne Bossuet, nicknamed "the Eagle of Meaux".
The building of the Old Chapter (Vieux Chapître), dating from the thirteenth century, occupies the space between the bishop’s palace and the cathedral, forming a magnificent close.
In this exceptional setting the “Grand Spectacle Historique” nocturnal event enacts two thousand years of history in sound and lighting effects, with no less than 16 events from June to September each year.
The famous Brie de Meaux, crowned "king of cheeses" at the 1815 Congress of Vienna, has a Label of Controlled Origin. It is a distinctively soft cheese, encased in a covering of white skin, scattered with reddish pigments, with a light hazelnut taste.
Things to do:
The Bossuet Museum
This, installed in the former bishop's palace in Meaux, is an exceptional venue which still bears the mark of its illustrious former inhabitants. On the first floor, the Synod room, the bishop's apartments, the chapel and the annexes contain the Fine Art collections of the museum. Painting and sculpture are the two main arts shown in the museum. A superb collection illustrates the evolving styles of painting from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries. One room contains all the documents concerning Jacques Bénigne Bossuet, the Bishop of Meaux from 1682 to 1704.
For history lovers, the "Meaux, city of Art and History" heritage department offers a programme of guided tours and lectures from April to October.
A discovery booklet gives visitors the opportunity to answer entertaining questions while going from one place of interest to another.