A little history of Saint-Sébastien church in Nancy

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The church - ©Caroline Léna Becker / CC-BY The church - ©Caroline Léna Becker / CC-BY
Saint-Sébastien church in Nancy Parish church


A chapel was consecrated here in the beginning of the 17th century, and a first tower was raised in 1682. But the building site took time, so the poor church went to ruin. It would be too expensive to restore it... so they decided to raze it and reraise a brand new one!

Architect Nicolas Jennesson put it up in 1720: L'Histoire de Nancy, a book by Charles Pfister, tells us that he struggled and instituted legal proceedings against the city. Because he wanted more money... The church was finally ended in 1731.

A nice decoration

The façade is composed of Doric order on the door and Ionic order above. Low-reliefs represent the Virgin Mary and the Christ flank by angels. We also can see saint Nicolas resurrecting children (yes, saint Nicolas is Lorraine’s patron saint)... We also have saint Charles Borromée, a rope against his neck. All these sculptures were made by Joseph-Dieudonné Pierre, from Nancy.

Here, look at that: the clock (1841) replaced the Lorraine blazon hammered during the French Revolution, sculpted by François Chassel... Don’t forget the two statues: duke Léopold with a Roman suit and saint Sébastien, by Victor Huel.

Inside, one curiosity: Stanislas’ official painter’s grave, Jean Girardet, died in 1778. We still can see his work in Nancy city hall or his Stanislas portrait in Nancy Lorrain Museum. His family and friends dedicated him this monument.

In 1801, painter Laurent made the painter's portrait in a medallion, with a pretty tragic scene: a Time allegory wants to cover Girardet’s face with a cloth, but Lorraine’s allegory prevent it from doing this...

Peace back

During the Revolution, the church was converted into an asylum and into a barn! In the 19th century, the district changed a lot. And one century later, what an upheaval! A mall just opened, then a parking lot and others buildings. The church didn’t changed much, since that time, quiet in middle of all that city noise...

And also!