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May 30: Palais des Papes

Just north of the Place de l'Horloge is the Palais des Papes — the Palace of the Popes — which was the papal residence during the 1300s when Avignon temporarily became the seat of the papacy, the city's primary (well-deserved!) historical claim to fame.

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Along with the Cathédrale to its north, the Palais presents an enormously imposing face on the Place du Palais.

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Across the way, the rustication of the old Hôtel des Monnaies (Mint), which later housed the Conservatoire until 2007.

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The conical supports of these towers are pretty magnifique. Also note the cruciform arrowslits. I wouldn't be surprised if their shape is directly connected to the papality of the Palais.

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A diversity of diagonals. The Palais is what they use to illustrate "stereotomic" in the dictionary.

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The Place du Palais is also pretty neat, with its irregular stepping layers. Not the most accessible square in the world.

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Mais oui, c'est le Mime du Palais!

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The Palais looks like it was carved out of cliffs.

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On the west side of the Place, a curious lean-to building peeks over a courtyard wall.

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A front view of the cathedral, Notre-Dame des Doms, with its lofty statue of Notre Dame herself atop the tower.

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Tout à coup, un bataillon de pigeons!

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This pigeon was doing a pretty good impression of Planet Mars.

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Feeding pigeons, watchful pigeon, perched pigeon, suitor pigeon.

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Up the stairs toward the cathedral, varying distances of statues.

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Zigzag pigeon.

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The north returning face of the Palais. A+ composition.