Dedicated to Saint Salvi, first Bishop of Albi from 574 to 584, the “Collégiale” of Saint Salvi associates elements of Romanesque (10th century) and Gothic (13th century) architecture, marked by the use of stone in the Romanesque elements and brick in the Gothic.
The “Collégiale” is a collegiate church, a church where the daily office of worship is maintained by a college of canons; a non-monastic, or 'secular' community of clergy, organised as a self-governing corporate body.
Saint-Salvi presents a composite architecture associating Romanesque and Gothic styles and is one of the largest Romanesque churches in and around Albi. It was converted into a fodder store after the French Revolution but was given back to the Church at the beginning of the 19th century.
Mounted by an impressive bell and watch tower, Saint-Salvi is one of the oldest buildings in Albi. All that remains today of the cloister, built in 1270 and destroyed during the French Revolution, is the southern gallery. The church includes elements of the Romanesque (for example the semi-circular arches) and Gothic (the capitals and the decoration of the pillars).
Upon entering the church, the visitor is struck by its luminosity. The beautiful alignment of the columns opens up an infinite perspective, concentrating one’s thought upon the essential.References:
The Externsteine (Extern stones) is a distinctive sandstone rock formation located in the Teutoburg Forest, near the town of Horn-Bad Meinberg. The formation is a tor consisting of several tall, narrow columns of rock which rise abruptly from the surrounding wooded hills. Archaeological excavations have yielded some Upper Paleolithic stone tools dating to about 10,700 BC from 9,600 BC.
In a popular tradition going back to an idea proposed to Hermann Hamelmann in 1564, the Externsteine are identified as a sacred site of the pagan Saxons, and the location of the Irminsul (sacral pillar-like object in German paganism) idol reportedly destroyed by Charlemagne; there is however no archaeological evidence that would confirm the site's use during the relevant period.
The stones were used as the site of a hermitage in the Middle Ages, and by at least the high medieval period were the site of a Christian chapel. The Externsteine relief is a medieval depiction of the Descent from the Cross. It remains controversial whether the site was already used for Christian worship in the 8th to early 10th centuries.
The Externsteine gained prominence when Völkisch and nationalistic scholars took an interest in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This interest peaked under the Nazi regime, when the Externsteine became a focus of nazi propaganda. Today, they remain a popular tourist destination and also continue to attract Neo-Pagans and Neo-Nazis.