Our second visit to Perigueux and it did not disappoint one bit. Once again we headed for the medieval quarter with its fascinating tower and magnificent Cathedral.
First we saw the “Mataguerre Tower”, which is the last fortified tower from the Medieval period still in existence.
From the 12th Century onwards a ring of twenty eight fortified towers with twelve gates enclosed the Cathedral of Saint Front.
The name “Mataguerre”derives from the Occitan language, “matar” to hold at bay, and “guerra”; war.
The tower walls are pierced by cruciform arrow-slits and cannon ports.
We always need to find an hidden gem or two and this is the first we spotted.
The tower at the side of a boutique is to be found across the square from the Cathedral. What interested me was a carved man at the front of the tower, he looked like a medieval worker relaxing for a few minutes.
Second hidden gem is to be found a little down the Rue Du Calvaire off the square/car park outside the Cathedral. This original and interesting door and windows fascinated me.
The massive Cathedral Saint Front was the fourth church to be built on this hill over the River Isle. First in the 6th C which was replaced in 1074 with a much larger church that housed some religious relics. However, this was burned down and another church took shape using Greek architects who designed these magnificent domes which look Byzantine.
The model for the Cathedral St-Front was Agil Apostoli in Constantinople (now gone), the same was used for another famous church: St Mark’s in Venice.
The bells of St Front (1847) are famous through out Europe due to the fact that they are made up of seven peals of bells and ten fixed bells. Quite loud but sounds amazing.
Paul Abadie spent fifty years renovating the Cathedral from 1852 onwards, it is breathtaking from all sides. He liked his work so much, especially the pinnacles, that he built cones onto the domes of his most famous creation, Sacre-Coeur in Paris.
Once inside the first impression is wow, it is so big, about one and a half times as long as a football pitch. With its minimal decoration it looks like a magnificent mosque.
Abadie also designed the chandeliers, which originally hung in Notre-Dame in Paris, made for the wedding of Napoleon III in 1853.
Sarlat, Brocante, 27th May, Lycee pre de Cordy.
Daglan, Brocante, 4th June at the Salle des Fêtes.