St. Nicholas Church

Blois, France

Fleeing from the Normans and carrying with them the relics of their founder, St-Laumer, some Benedictine monks found shelter in Blois where they decided to build their abbey. the present church, today known as St. Nicolas, but whose real name is St. Laumer, was the former abbey-church.

From 1138 to 1186 these monks built the choir, the transept and the first row of columns of the abbey-church, completing it at the beginning of the next century. During the War of Religion the church was disfigured and the abbey itself destroyed by the Protestants. In the 17th and 18th centuries abbey was rebuilt, it was turned into a hospital at the time of the Revolution.

The speed with which the church was built and the sole addition of the apse chapel in the 14th century give a surprising unity to the whole. On entering the church, one could imagine that it was worked in the same stone by the same workman, for the same majestic and robust characteristics appear in all the different parts of the church. The elegant form of the choir, the crossbar, the majestic pillars of the transept-cross, the statues of people and masks which are to be found along the entire length of the building, the perspective inside the church, where the horizontal lines dominate the verticals; all this adds up to harmonious ensemble, which places the abbey-church of St. Laumer among the most remarkable examples of French medieval architecture.

However, two different periods of construction - about 20 years between them - have left the building with two different, and very marked, architectural styles. It is from the center of the church that the visitor will be able to notice these characteristics the most easily.

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Address

Rue Saint-Laumer, Blois, France
See all sites in Blois

Details

Founded: 1138-1186
Category: Religious sites in France
Historical period: Birth of Capetian dynasty (France)

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Bemou Ethiopia (5 months ago)
Magnificent
Anne Platt (2 years ago)
Stunning stained glass windows
Vlad Lazar (2 years ago)
Nice church. Great contrast between the coloirfull vitrailles and the gray stone architecture.
Ben Jay (2 years ago)
Stunning coloured light falls beautifully across the lovely architecture from the unusual stained glass windows. Well worth stopping by for a cool walk round out of the heat. Seek out the blue stained glass windows furthest from the entrance. If you visit later in the afternoon (say 17:45) the light comes through at a lovely angle.
Cawa (3 years ago)
Je n'ai malheureusement pas pu y entrer cette fois-ci, mais je peux dire quelle est très jolie de l'extérieur ! La prochaine fois je m'y arrêterai pour la découvrir de l'intérieur.
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