Language course in Montpellier: Timeline

ESL - Timeline
2013: The first official same-sex marriage in France takes place right in Montpellier.

2000: Montpellier’s ultra-handy tram system starts operating. With their colourful cars designed by Christian Lacroix, you definitely won’t miss them!

1997: The first International Festival of Extreme Sports (FISE) takes place in Montpellier and is still hugely popular today!

1977: The Antigone neighbourhood is built over former army barracks, transforming a former wasteland into a modern new district designed by Catalan architect, Ricardo Bofill.

1962: Algeria gains complete independence from France. As a result, Montpellier sees a huge influx of Algerian ex-pats and immigrants throughout the 60’s. 

1890’s: Destroying vineyards throughout France and Spain, the phylloxera plague nearly wipes out Montpellier’s wine production. Luckily the wine industry here has since recovered!

Early 18th century: Louis XIV makes Montpellier the capital of the Languedoc region of France.

1693: The architectural marvel of the Porte de Peyrou is built. Make sure you stroll along its wide, tree-lined promenade during your time in Montpellier!

1622: The Siege of Montpellier, lead by King Louis XIII, resulted in the city returning to Catholic rule.

1598: The Edict of Nantes, also issued by Henry IV, granted rights to French Protestants in an effort to keep the peace and unify the country.

1593: Montpellier’s beautiful Botanical Gardens are inaugurated under Henry IV. They’re the oldest in France and an absolute must-see!
 
1567: The city falls under Protestant control, while the majority of the rest of France remains Catholic.

1529: Nostradamus, famous for his prophecies, travelled to Montpellier to obtain his doctorate in medicine. 

16th century: The Protestant Reformation sweeps through Montpellier and turns it into a bastion of the Protestant religion.

1394: The Jews are exiled from Montpellier, ending the rich, multicultural period during which Christians, Muslims and Jews peacefully coexisted and conducted business within the city walls.

1349: The Mallorcan king James III sells Montpellier to French king Philip VI.

1327: Rocco, who would go on to become the future patron saint of Montpellier known as Saint Roch, dies anonymously in an Italian prison where he is falsely held as a spy. Legend has it that after spending years tending to plague victims, he contracted the disease himself and retired to a forest where he was only able to survive thanks to a nobleman’s dog who brought him bread every day and licked his wounds. This is why you’ll always see him portrayed artistically with a dog!

1316-20: The famous humanist Petrarch studies law at the University of Montpellier.

14th century: The plague, otherwise known as the Black Death, ravages Montpellier and wipes out an estimated one-third of the population.

1204: Montpellier falls under the rule of the Crown of Aragon, solidified with the wedding of Pedro II of Aragon to Marie of Montpellier. The city was actually part of Marie’s dowry – what a wedding gift!

1200: Montpellier was once a walled city, and you can still see two of the wall’s towers, La Tour de la Babote and La Tour des Pins, standing today. This is approximately when they were built.

1160: Montpellier’s famous historic law school begins accepting students. It’s one of the oldest in France!

Mid-1100’s: Jewish Spaniard and travel writer Benjamin of Tudela describes Montpellier as a bustling city full of international traders. Not much has changed, except that students have replaced the traders!

985: The first written accounts are recorded of a settlement in Montpellier controlled by the Guilhem feudal family. It’s one of the few French cities with no Greek or Roman background! This is why Montpellier’s history is considered relatively short. 

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