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Sait-Foy Church Paper

In: Religion Topics

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The Construction and conservation of the Abbey-Church of Saint-Foy in Conques

By John Lester

Art History 409, Fridays
April 25, 2014

There are a thousand different architectural styles that can be utilized to build a church of God but Romanesque is one of the most beautiful architectural styles. The abbey-church of Saint-Foy has endured in its Romanesque form for nearly a millennium. Saint-Foy abbey-church was named for the reliquary in its possession and is located in the small town of Conques (Fig. 1). The initial founders, during the medieval period thought this site was gorgeous, a haven from the external world and the perfect location for a church. The original monastery was built in the eighth century by monks who wanted to escape Muslim persecution. They also brought the reliquary of St-Foy, which was stolen by a Benedictine monk from another monastery and installed in 866. Because of the theft of the reliquary this church was able to expand by becoming an important stop for pilgrims traveling to Santiago de Compostela. The monks started building the new church around the 11th century and finished by the middle of the 12th century. The distinctive look, Stages of construction, as-well-as architectural frame and decorative sculptures makes this abbey-church a very important and beautiful stop for the pilgrims on their way to Santiago de Compostela. Just like many other pilgrimage churches, St.-Foy is a crucifix form plan. Galleries were built on top of aisles and the ceilings were elevated over the choir and transept, this was to help with the bigger crowds of people at the upper level. With the influx of visitors, the abbey had to take the density of the crowds into account and their movement when the church decided to expand. The aisles on the sides that border the nave are meant to guide the pilgrims towards the ambulatory and out of…...

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