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Cîteaux - Abbaye Robert and 21 monks from Molesmes settled in Cîteaux forest on 21 March 1098. He was succeeded firstly by Albéric and later by Etienne Harding. Etienne wrote the Charta Caritatis, the constitution of the emerging Cistercian Order by which it is still governed today. In 1113 Etienne welcomed Bernard and around 30 of his companions to the novitiate. Bernard founded Clairvaux in 1115 and on his death the Order had 300 monasteries. Many great abbots followed in the steps of Bernard: Guerric, Guillaume, Aelred, Isaac de l'Etoile etc? In the XIVth and XVth centuries the plague, the hundred years' war, commendam and reform, impoverished the Order. Nevertheless, the great abbot Jean de Cirey began the construction of the Library. The wars of religion were disastrous for the Order and Cîteaux was destroyed 4 times. In the XVIIth century, at La Trappe, Rancé reformed the Order which is divided into the Strict Observance and the Common Observance. At this time Cîteaux ordered the construction of the ?definitory? where the Central Commission of the General Chapter met. The French Revolution disbanded the Order, but in 1898, at the instigation of Dom Sebastien Wyart, a small group of monks revived monastic life at Citeaux. Around 30 monks currently live at Citeaux Abbey, founding place of the Cistercian Family.

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