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The most famous son of Chinon, François Rabelais, the earthy humanist Renaissance writer, lived in town on rue de la Lamproie. (A plaque marks the spot where his father practiced law and maintained a home and office.) The museum in his honor, just outside the hamlet of Seuilly 5.5km (3 1/2 miles) west of Chinon, was an isolated cottage at the time of his birth. Spending the early years of his life here profoundly affected the writer, and the area served as inspiration for parts of his most famous work, “Gargantua.” Exhibits are spread out on the three floors of the main building, in the dovecote and the wine cellars, each area dedicated to an aspect of Rabelais, his times, and his role in Chinon. It is still an active vineyard, producing 4,000 bottles of excellent wine that would do the writer proud.