Brinay and its frescos: medieval schedule and Jesus' life
Scratch, scratch, scratch
The re-discovering of the paintings dates back to 1913: an Institut de France member, André Humbert, spent his holidays in the area.
He decided to visit church of Brinay. Oh, just a quick look! He was an expert. And the awful whitewash that covered the walls roused his curiosity. He started to scratch it when suddenly, pieces crumbled away. Frescos started to come to light, little by little… under 3 coats of whitewash! That’s why colours are pretty well-preserved: we have ochre, yellow, blue and green.
Let’s get cracking!
First, we see on the intrados (the part between the nave and the choir) a 12 months calendar: the peasants’ daily works, in the Middle Ages: a pretty unusual representation in a church! Besides, we can see name of the months, in Latin.
• February with his coat, warming up by the fireplace. • March digging over. • April sleeping under a tree • May who’s riding, going hunting • June reaping hays. • July, harvest time • August threshing grains. • September making wine • October picking acorns. • November killing the pig • December, with a big feast…
Plenty of scenes
Now, let’s see the choir. We have: the 4 Prophets, but above all scenes from Jesus’ life: the Annunciation, the Visitation, Jesus’ birth, the Annunciation to the Shepherds, the Magus led by the star, the Magus and Herod, Innocents’ slaughter, the presentation to the Temple, the escape to Egypt, Jesus’ baptism, Jesus tempted by the Devil in the desert, Jesus took away by angels, the wedding at Cana.