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Abbey of Saint Jean des Vignes, Soissons: Overall view, west facade still standing independently
Soissons has been subject to many invasions and devastations, most notably in 948 by the Normans, in the 16th century during the Wars of Religion, during the French Revolution and during World War I. Of the twenty-two churches that once existed in the city, only two, the cathedral, and St Léger, now survive basically intact. The Abbey of St. Jean des Vignes was a monastery of Augustinian Canons situated in the south western hills of Soissons. Only ruins remain; the Gothic west façade and towers, the cloister and refectory.