The destruction at Poitiers Cathedral | Marie Antoinette's Gossip Guide to the 18th Century: The destruction at Poitiers Cathedral

February 02, 2016

The destruction at Poitiers Cathedral

Poitiers Cathedral, 1840s.
A first hand account of damage done at Poitiers Cathedral in the 18th century.


"The church of Poitiers is one of the most celebrated in all France for its glorious antiquity, and the greatness and sanctity of several of the dignitaries who have governed it. The first of these was St. Hilary; a little later came St. Fortunatus to fill the episcopal chair.

Where were originally placed statutes of princes and bishops, there are now only elegant baldachins separated and supported by little columns. The barbarians of the close of the Eighteenth Century raised their hammers against that magnificent decoration and reduced it to powder." 
Singleton, Esther, and Alice Morse. Famous Cathedrals As Seen and Described by Great Writers. New York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1909.

More recently, conservation on the Cathedral's historic murals: https://revitalizationnews.com/article/discovery-of-13th-century-murals-spurs-controversial-restoration-of-poitiers-cathedral/


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2 comments

  1. I'm in France right now, and have been saddened at how much of the medieval cathedrals have been destroyed (I didn't even want to go to Notre Dame de Paris, since I knew there wasn't a lot inside there after the Revolution and it's mostly been restored from Victorian times.) I'm in Reims now where stuff was in good shape till WW1, and they've apparently done pretty good jobs of restoring it, but still a lot of the statues are ruined.

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  2. @Gibson Girl Edwardian Fashion I believe they have just finished 'restoring' chartes cathedral...have you been yet? let us know how it came out!! There was a lot of controversy because they really cleaned up the century old soot stains and it changed the whole feel of the building...

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