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Germigny, one of France's oldest church and its Byzantine mosaic

The mosaic | Pymouss / CC-BY-SA
Chapel Germigny-des-Prés Carolingian oratory

Oh, we are almost in Italy, here, with this unusual building, its roofing tiles and cypress... And yet, we are in Loiret, next to Saint-Benoît-sur-Loire!

This Carolingian oratory stirs up my curiosity. It's the oldest church in France.

In 806, Goth Théodulphe, Charlemagne's counsellor and bishop of Orléans, raised Germigny's former church. We still can see it in the western part of the current building.

In the 9th century, the church was composed of four semi-circular apses. We nowadays notice the long nave extending the primitive oratory.

Germigny is the oldest church in France, OK, but we have few remains left: capitals and mosaics, because the old building was entirely rebuilt between 1867 and 1878 by the architect Lisch.

Well, what about these mosaics? They are located in the apse and represent hand of God blessing the Ark of the Covenant.

They used to be distemper, so they discovered them at random... Indeed, pieces fell from the vault! We think the artist who made those mosaics was a Byzantine who ran away persecutions in his country...

About the the author

I'm fond of strolls and History, with juicy and spicy details!