Avignonet-Lauragais (Occitan Avinhonet de Lauragués) is located on the road to Santiago de Compostela (Via Arles, Via Tolosa), in the Haute-Garonne department, in the Occitan region.
Its inhabitants are called Avignonetains.
This commune of the urban area of Toulouse is located in Lauragais between Toulouse and Castelnaudary in the extreme north-east of the department of Haute-Garonne on the border of the department of Aude on the departmental road 813 (formerly national road 113) at the edge of the Deux Mers motorway. Located on the road to the Mediterranean Sea, the village is visible from the highway by the presence of several wind turbines driven by the wind of Autan sweeping the plain. Not far, another channel of communication, the Canal du Midi, passes at the foot of the village. Port-Lauragais is a motorway stop and port located in the town. The town is part of the Lauragais Country.
Wheat is the main crop of the Lauragais plain since the Gallo-Roman era. But it is in the fifteenth century that the pastel makes the region rich. We then call the region "Pays de cocagne". But the indigo from America competes with pastel and wheat becomes the main resource of the country from the sixteenth century.
In addition to the magnificent gothic church of Notre-Dame des Miracles (14th-16th centuries), Avignonet has an interesting historical heritage, witness of its rich and tumultuous past: the remains of the ramparts (thirteenth and fifteenth centuries) and the castle (eleventh century), the pepper mill tower bearing the statue of the Crusader, half-timbered houses and homes of the seventeenth and eighteenth century.
The village is known for the massacre of inquisitors of Catharism. On May 28, 1242, the inquisition tribunal, led by Guillaume Arnaud and Étienne de Saint-Thibéry was held in the city. Several men, led by Pierre-Roger de Mirepoix and assisted by the people of Avignonet, massacred the inquisitors and their followers with their axes in their sleep, thus killing eleven victims. It was only one of the last bursts of resistance before the siege of Montségur, which ended with a pyre for the Cathars refugees in the place, March 16, 1244.