The village has not changed that much since 1265, when she was founded by Éléanor de Provence, Queen consort of Henry III of England, also Duke of Aquitaine, in south west France.
The escarpment on which she was built, and the fortified walls still enclose her to one side, while offering views over the Dropt river, and valley. But the towered gateways have disappeared, and the straight roads are now paved, and lined with cars.
The wood timbered market hall has been replaced by a magnificent nineteenth century cast iron and glass structure. But the arched arcades still run around the squares perimeter, and are still busy with merchants and customers.
The Hotel de Ville occupies the same place on the square, proudly protecting the ‘Esclapot Charter’, a precious document detailing the architectural plans, and building regulations of the new village.
The tall Church dominates a corner near the square, although never as important as commerce, continues her duty to ring hourly, for evening Angélus, and Sunday Mass.
The alleys sculpt corners between streets and houses, where cats loiter, flowers grow in pots, and open doors and windows cast light into dark back rooms.
The safe mount, from the latin Mons securus, or Monségur to the inhabitants, is an old soul, surviving the times with character and charm. A Bastide (fortified) village of streets and alleys for everyone to explore.