First mentions of the city are dated back to the 10th century, when Montpellier belonged to famous French counts. The city is conveniently located between two high hills, and some of its streets are located in mountainous areas. Because the city is situated on the border between Spain and Italy, it has always been an important center of trade.
The ancient town was very small; it was surrounded by a powerful protective wall, and among more of less large buildings were only a chapel and a castle. The territory of Montpellier expanded steadily, so today tourists can see two towers, which have remained from the former fortifications. The towers are called la Tour des Pn and la Tour de la Babot. An old church called Notre-Dame-des-Tables has also managed to survive. In ancient times it was quite a remarkable place for pilgrims, the number of which increased every year. That was the reason for the expansion of the city. In order to accommodate all newcomers in this place were built first hostels, hotels, and taverns.
In 1220 the School of Medicine was opened in the city by order of Cardinal Conrad, and a couple of years later Montpellier became the property of Aragonese kings. During this period starts the real prosperity and economic growth of this region as the citizens received many freedoms and opportunities. Trading also began developing seriously, becoming the main source of income for the city treasury.
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