The retables



In the chansel and in each transept crossway there are three beautiful retables dating of the 17 century and 18 century.

If in the Middle Age there were wooden panellings above the altars, it is only at the end of the 16 century that appeared these ones with such a marvellous decor.

This was due to the new pastoral tendencies issued from the " Concile de Trente " ( 1545 -1563) of the Catholic Church.

Against the sense of purity and the none worshipping of the Saints of the Protestantists, the Catholics shall increased on the contrary the decoration of their churches. These places must show off the heavenly world, in a way to forsee the eternal life.

The retable is used to show off the altar, and by this mean to enlighten the Divine Sacrifice.

The retable , being alive with many figures as cherubs, saints , birds and so on ... , took a very important part in the spreading of the Saints and the Virgin worshipping.

The chansel retable


The main reredos

In Sainte -Noyale Chapel, the chancel retable is dating of the end of the 17 century and the beginning of the 18 century. It is of the "Lavallois " style. Above the altar, a painting shows the Virgin Ascension.

On each side of it, set off by two columns, in a recess, two statues are standing. On the right Sainte-Noyale's herself and on the left side Saint Marcus's.

Saint Noyale

the Assumption

Saint Noyale holding her head

The Assumption

The transept retable

The north side

In each transept crossing there are two other retables. In the south side, the paintings are showing Christ Baptism surrounded by Sainte Catherine 's statue and Saint John the Baptist's.

On the other side, a painting depicts a mass to which Saint Noyale is attending, surrounded too by Saint Cornely 's statue and St James 's seeming to stand as bodyguards.



the south side
Little angel of the altar


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All the photographs © Pierre Laurent Constantin
English translation : Françoise Constantin-Sarot