2 weeks in France-5-26 to 6/8/2022

Day 1

Historic center

Historic center con'd & Archdiocese' garden

Cathedral of Bourges/The Crypt

The Crypt continuation

Day 2

Musee Estève

Palais Jacques Coeur

Palais Jacques Coeur continuation

Dinner at la Gargouille

2 Days in Bourges, France-5/29/2022 to 5/30/2022

Day 1-Cathedral of Bourges-The crypt continuation-5/29/2022


Since 1994, the crypt has housed fragments of the cathedral’s rood screen.


The rood screen was built in the 13th century, initially separating the nave (open to worshippers) from the choir (reserved for clergy only).


On the left is Pilate and the maid sculpture and on the right is the Calvary sculpture.


The Calvary: detail, sculptural group with Christ on the cross surrounded by a soldier with a spear and the sponge carrier, with the Virgin Mary and John the Baptist either side.



Sculpture depicting the Rise of the Calvary:

As they led him away.. he was followed by a great crowd of people and women beating their breasts and bemoaning him. Turning to them, Jesus said: Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me but weep for yourselves and for your children"


The sleeping guardians.

The guards were represented, in Bourges, between the evocation of the burial and that of the discovery of the empty tomb, without the resurrection itself being visualized


The appearance at the Madeleine


The Christ dragging Adam and Eve out of Limbo.

The most common figuration of the descent into limbo, in the 18th century, equates Satan with the mouth of Leviathan, from which escape the figures of Adam and Eve followed by a few chosen ones


The pot of hell

It is by adding the representation of the damned in a pot, usual for the last judgments sculpted on the portals of 18th century, that the master of the Jube was able to give the descent to limbo the necessary scale, by concluding the cycle with a message of hope for deserving humanity.


On the left closer view of the  Pot of hell

on  the right is the jaws of hell, with sinners entering the open mouth of the Leviathan, fragment from the lateral return of the original rood screen.


We are now entering a large vaulted room.


The Entombment in Polychrome wood, shows the burial of Christ in a sarcophagus by Joseph and Nicodemus, and in the presence of the Virgin, St. John , and the Holy Women.


Entombment, circa 1540, sculptural group donated by canon Jacques Dubreuil, in the Gothic crypt.



Close look at the Entombment


Tomb of John, Duke of Berry


The ensemble of sculpture includes the marble tomb of the Duke, with his symbolic animal, a bear chained and muzzled, at his feet. Nearby are statues of the Duke and Jeanne of Boulogne, both remakes attributed to the sculptor Jean Cox in about 1710. 


The tomb itself is one of the major art works in the chapel. It was made between 1391 and 1397 and is an important work of medieval sculpture, made between 1422 and 1428 by the sculptor Jean de Cambrai.



Close look at the bear chained and muzzled, at the Duke's feet.


Madonna with child.


We are now done with the crypt and we are on way out.


Exiting the crypt out to the Western facade. 


Despite the damage done by Protestants and by the French Revolution, there are still 1680 sculptures intact.


Five portals allow access to the interior, all with double doors, and correspond exactly to the five naves.


 The central portal is designed on the theme of the Last Judgment.

This masterpiece of Gothic sculpture dating from 1240 depicts a grandiose rendition of the Last Judgment surveyed by a majestic an beautiful Christ.


On the left is the Saint William portal-Dating from the 16th century, it is dedicated to the archbishop of Bourges who saw its construction. Guillaume was canonized after his death.

On the right is the Saint-Ursinus portal- Saint Ursinus was the first bishop of Bourges. He built the town’s very first church at the beginning of the Christian era. The bas-relief of this door’s sculpture tells part of his miraculous story.


We are now in the back of the Cathedral.  The windows on the 1st floor were the one we saw inside the crypt.


The double-arched flying buttresses on the exterior of the cathedral are very similar to those of the chevet of Notre-Dame de Paris.

The Crypt is below



NEXT.... Day 2-Musee Estève




Our house


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