Thursday, October 2, 2014

La basilique Sainte-Marie Madeleine

Yesterday, we made our way about 40 minutes southwest from our town to Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Beaume to visit the basilica where Mary Magdalene's remains rest in the crypt below.

I was ready for this visit.  It's been a long time since I've visited a medieval church in France so I was looking forward to this one, in particular...

At the entrance, on the parvis of the basilica, is a nod to the famous provençal poet, Frédéric Mistral after which the cold winter wind here is named.

Unlike other great basilicas in France: Notre-Dame, Chartres, Reims, this one is lighter, airy and more feminine.  No heavy bronze crosses, darkness and dankness here.  The stone is still light-colored, paintings of Mary Magdelene clearly dominate.

Photo source

Honey-coloured stone pillars with graffitti...

.... from over 300 years ago!

A section of la Chape de Saint Louis d'Anjou circa 1300

MM holding the foot of the cross
A beautiful church to visit, taking one's time to savour all the beauty for the eyes to behold.  Now, who was Mary Magdalene really?  Need to read a good historical novel to learn about her.  Does anyone have any suggestions?  I have found this one on the Internet:




Linda said...

Don't know if this novel is what you're looking for, but The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown might give you something to think about!

Looks like a lovely place to visit.

labergerebasque said...

The church is serene and fresh, like Spring, love it

Stella said...

Linda, I've read the Da Vinci Code and yes, it talks about MM and Jesus and the child they might have had leading to the Merovingian line... I want a book that's about her, in particular. Thanks for your comment!

Stella said...

Merci pour ton commentaire Bergère...