Fontevraud Abbey is a religious building near Chinon, in Anjou, France in the Loire Valley. It has served as a cultural center since 975. The abbey was founded and the first permanent structures were built between 1110 and 1119.
Robert of Arbrissel declared that the leader of the order should always be a woman. This was the start of a position that attracted many rich and noble abbesses over the years, including members of the French Bourbon royal family.
In the early years the Plantagenets were great benefactors of the abbey. Eleanor of Aquitaine became a nun there after the death of her husband Henry II.
The order was dissolved during the French Revolution. The abbey became a prison from 1804 to 1963. The Abbey was originally the site of the graves of King Henry II of England, his wife Eleanor of Aquitaine, their son Richard the Lion Heart, their daughter Joan, their grandson Raymond VII of Toulouse, Isabella of Angouleme, wife of Henry and Eleanor's son King John. There is no presence of their remains on the site. Their remains were possibly destroyed during the Frency Revolution.