Pontigny, a village of France, in the department of Yonne, about 18 m. S. E. of Aux-erre; pop. about 800. It is celebrated for a magnificent abbey, originally Cistercian, founded in 1150 by Thibaud, count of Champagne. It became the asylum of Thomas a Becket in 1164, of Stephen Langton and the principal English bishops in 1208, and about 1239 of Archbishop Edmund Rich, who spent two years there, and whose shrine was visited by numbers of pilgrims during the middle ages. The abbey and church were burned by the Huguenots in 1568. Of the former one side of the cloister still remains, with vast underground apartments. It has been repaired and enlarged, and is now occupied by the Dominicans. The church, a Gothic building of the 14th century, is 360 ft. long, 73 wide in the nave and 150 in the transept, with an interior height of 70 ft. Around the apse are 11 chapels, all of which formerly contained richly sculptured tombs. It was partially restored in 1615, ranks as a national monument, and is undergoing a complete restoration at the expense of the government.
Of late years Pontigny has once more become a resort of Roman Catholic pilgrims from England, 300 of whom, under Archbishop Manning, visited the church together on Sept. 3, 1874.