1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Verneuil

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VERNEUIL, a town of north-western France, in the department of Eure, 34 m. S.S.W. of Evreux by rail. Pop. (1906) 3529. Verneuil, situated on the left bank of the Avre, has a number of old houses and churches. Of the latter the most important is the church of La Madeleine (nth to 17th century), the facade of which is flanked by an imposing square tower of the first half of the 16th century, similar in origin and appearance to the Tour de Beurre of Rouen cathedral. The church contains old stained glass, an ironwork pulpit and other works of art. The church of Notre Dame (12th and 16th centuries) possesses stone carvings of the Romanesque period and good stained glass. The Tour Grise is a fine cylindrical keep built in 1120 by Henry I., who fortified Verneuil as a stronghold for the Norman frontier. The town rose to -considerable importance, and is said to have numbered as many as 25,000 inhabitants.

In 1424 the French were severely defeated by John, duke of Bedford, under the walls of Verneuil, which was then surrendered to the English; this victory confirmed the supremacy of the English over the country north of the Loire. The town was recaptured in 1449. It carries on ironfounding, dyeing and the manufacture of machinery.