THE HISTORY OF ABBAYE
The privileged location of Talloires has without doubt been inhabited for innumerable years (it is known that the via consularis from Milan to Strasbourg reached Geneva via Faverges by passing along one of the lake's shore).
Talloires entered into history books in 866 .Lothaire II – the great grand son of Charlemagne – presented the village to his first wife Thiberge with an order to reside there after their divorce. She lived there until her death, but during her long exile she arranged for a Cella(a small, modest yet durable religious establishment)to be built for her in Talloires, The chapple surrounded by many shelters and open to wandering monks, was built on the site where later the famous abbey would stand.
A number of monks took up residence there, built their own cells and formed the embryo of a small monastery. One hundred and fifty years later, the domain of Talloires was given to l'Abbey Bénédictine de Savigny (near Lyon) by the king and queen of Bourgogne, Rodolphe III and Ermengarde. The first prior, Germain, with the help of the people of Talloires over several years, erected a grand and beautiful church (today no longer standing) on the site of Thiberge's Cella. Soon other buildings were constructed nearby to accomodate the monks at this marvellous location, formed by the bay which is enclosed by the surreally contoured mountains. Over six centuries the priory became rich thanks to gifts from the bishops and Counts of Geneva and the Dukes of Savoie.
In 1674, a brief of pope Clément X displayed the insignia of the priory in the Abbaye Royale. Then began the demise. The monks – veritable feodal lords – led dissolute lives which provoked a spirit of revolt among the population. The remnants of the splendour only serve to consolidate our conception of this era. The revolution did not reach Talloires until July 1792. And then the belfry of the abbatial church collapsed (it is said that the bells still lie at the bottom of the lake) and the ruins were razed permanently in 1833. 700 years of archives fed the flame of an immense funeral pyre at La place des Marronniers...
Talloires was forgotten for many decades until the beauty of its surroundings began to attract a privileged society of artists, writers, and ladies and gentlemen of leisure. One inn by the lake, followed by a second, welcomed travellers arriving from Annecy by boat.
It is since the turn of the century that the world-renowned village of Talloires has blossomed, equally due to its admirable location, its cuisine, and a welcome of the highest order.