A little history of Notre-Dame-de-la-Seds church

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The façade - ©Malost / CC-BY-SA The façade - ©Malost / CC-BY-SA
Notre-Dame-de-la-Seds church Parish church

Sedes, the seat!

Here’s Aix's first church. In the beginning, it was a small oratory founded by saint Maximin in the 4th century, upon a temple dedicated to Cybel. The bishopric seat then moved near the new cathedral dedicated to the Virgin Mary, so that explains the name of "Our-Lady-of-the-Seds", Seds for sedes episcopali, "bishop seat" in Latin.

The Seds' Virgin Mary

An old statue

Then, in the 11th century, the cathedral moved in Saint-Sauveur. And the Seds became a simple church! People used to worship here a little Virgin Mary statue: a copy of the one displayed by Maximin in the primitive cathedral, destroyed by Saracens.

The precious effigy moved in Saint-Sauveur, as well as Mitre’s relics. But in 1390, the Seds was plundered by Raymond de Turenne’s army, who only left ruins...

Plague and miracle

The reconstruction came in the middle of the 16th century. Woah, what a mess it was... In 1521, the plague struck Aix. The tradition says that every night, fire lines appeared on the soil, drawing a big rectangle.

They started to dig and found ruins, an old oratory dedicated to the Virgin... a miracle! It meant that they had to reraise a church there...

The end of the construction happened with the end of the plague epidemic, in 1555: only the façade was built in the 18th century. In 1630, here we go again! A terrible plague epidemic reappeared in Aix. The city mayor made a wish.

Believers would make a procession to the Seds every year, to celebrate the day the plague stopped. This day came on September 1st 1630. In 1816, Mrs. Raymond, sister of Saint-Augustin of the Holy-Sacrament, moved near our church and founded a convent.

Thanks to her, the precious Virgin statue was back in the Seds church! The current church dates back to 1853, raised by the architect from Aix, Henri Révoil. Don’t miss the statue, in her niche, dressed in blue...


And also!