Saint-Denis

Saint-Denis – Keeper of French history

Saint-Denis is a Northern suburb of Paris. The suburb is named after the eponymous Abbey, which houses the tomb of the kings of France. This building is considered a gem of Gothic architecture in France.

The date of Foundation of the Abbey considered to be 625 a year, and its Cathedral is the oldest Gothic building. The main Cathedral of the Abbey erected on the grave of St. Dionysius, and dedicated to him. According to the legend, Dionysius came here after his execution, carrying the severed head in his hands.

In 1122 the post of Abbot in the monastery choose the Suger, who at the time was an adviser to Louis VI and VII. This person has also expanded the monastery grounds.

According to Suger, the Church should be the place where must freely penetrate the rays of divine light. In practice his idea begun in 1137, when construction began on the Gothic Church. Subsequently this had a huge impact on the development of Gothic in France.

When Sugaree was first used for the altar jog in the architectural scheme and made the rose window of the facade of the Basilica. But the main achievement became the Abbot stained glass Windows, are combined in cycles, which outlined the overall plot.

A new page in the difficult history of the monastery opens in the THIRTEENTH century, when Louis IX ordered to transfer the ashes of Dionysius and his predecessors at the Basilica. Subsequently did for them new gravestones. Since that time, in the Basilica were buried monarchs.

During the Huguenot takedowns and the hundred years war, the Abbey was constantly subjected to destruction. Even more it suffered during the French revolution. At the time of the burials were destroyed, and the remains of the monarchs dumped in common pit. The building itself was subjected to numerous raids.

Under Napoleon I in the Abbey began restoration work, and the believers returned in 1806. Eight years later, the remains of Royal families were collected in ossuary, which was located in the monastery. In 1816, by order of king Louis VIII, the Basilica was returned to tombstone, and eight years later he was himself buried here.

Gothic style Abbey was able to return the restorer eugène Emanuel that could breathe new life into it. At the moment, the monastery is considered to be a kind of Museum of tombstones.

Before the Renaissance, the tombs of the monarchs depicted their portraits and the portraits of deceased members of their families. But since the fourteenth century, monarchs began during the life of the order of the gravestone, so the artists were able to accurately convey the appearance of the “original”.

The Abbey of Saint-Denis is the custodian of the history of the Royal family and France itself. This place is visited by many tourists who seek to join the greatness of this country.

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