A medieval term for the inhabitants of parts of S. France applied to the heretics who were strong there in the late 12th and early 13th cents. They were a branch of the Cathars. They were condemned by successive councils from 1165 onwards, and Innocent III authorized a Crusade against them. The N. French forces were opposed not only by those who sympathized with heresy but a large part of S. French society. In 1233 the Inquisition began effective action against the heretics and by 1300 few survived. For their beliefs, See Cathars.