Notre-Dame-du-Paradis: stony pig and plague epidemic

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The spire - © / CC-BY-NC-SA The spire - © / CC-BY-NC-SA
Notre-Dame-du-Paradis church in Hennebont Parish church Epidemic

A majestic church

Do you see this huge bell-tower (16th c) with its spire 65 metres high? Also, do you see this gorgeous High Gothic porch? We have funny animals' gargoyles... even a pig!

Completed in 1530, the current Gothic church replaced an older church (12th century). Inside, we have organs (middle of the 18th century), the département’s oldest one. Stained-glass windows were made between 1955 and 1965 by Max Ingrand. And also... this statue, this golden Virgin! Do you see it? She saved Hennebont many times!

Hennebont’s plague...

She saved it especially in 1699, during a plague epidemic. Hennebont’s mayor, Haycinthe Cornic, came with inhabitants to put the city’s keys down at the Virgin’s feet. A last hope... They promised her a silver statue if the epidemic stopped. And on the next morning... the plague was gone!

So, on the first day of October 1700, four Hennebont judges brought a nice silver statue on the church altar. Hey, a promise is a promise! Unfortunately, they melted it during the French Revolution. Another one replaced it, crowned in 1900. To honour her, a great procession took place on the last Sunday of September, every year!

A painting (made by Henri-François Mulard in 1804) in the church echoes the city’s vow in 1699...

And also!