The Rotunda Churches (Dennis Aubrey)

Most Romanesque churches have a basilican style layout that we have previously explored. Based on the ancient Roman public building, often a law court, the basilica had a simple layout. The Christian church was authorized to worship openly by the Emperor Constantine in 313AD in the Edict of Milan. At this time, the Church chose […]

Something for Remembrance (Dennis Aubrey)

Via Lucis has discussed the importance of relics in medieval society in previous posts. They were part of the fabric of the practice of Christianity and affected the design of the physical churches themselves. Fundamentally, relics are remembrances that carry a spiritual power associated with the original source. The Catholic church defines three classes of […]

✿ The Artist (PJ McKey) ✿

During the Romanesque period, the arts were pressed into service by the church as a medium of mass-communication with which to address an ever-increasing but largely illiterate public. The teachings of the church, the hierarchy of society, and the relationship of the church and the secular world provided  the subject matter. But that said, how […]

Abbaye Saint Gildas-de-Rhuys (Dennis Aubrey)

The former province of Bretagne is one of the most interesting areas in France. The medieval Duchy was primarily Celtic instead of Germanic, spoke Brythonic Celtic, one of the two branches of the Celtic language, but was deeply allied with the French crown. The Bretons replaced Latin with French as the official language of the […]

The dim periphery (Dennis Aubrey)

We often read in conventional media and blogs alike the statements of people profess to be atheist or agnostics and who equate religions with their evil results. To hear some savant claim that Christianity is simply the slaughter of the Crusades, the Inquisition, or fundamentalist intolerance means that the speaker clearly understands little of the […]

Our Lady of Bernay (Dennis Aubrey)

The abbey church Notre Dame de Bernay is one of the earliest examples of Norman Romanesque architecture that remains to us. It is no longer a consecrated church and currently serves as a community exhibition hall and tourist attraction in the center of the town of Bernay. It was empty when we shot there in […]

Mysterium Tremendum (Dennis Aubrey)

I should let everyone know right now that they can hold Gordon Stewart accountable for this post. The blame is entirely his because he should know by now the fascination certain phrases have for me and how they lead me down arcane and convoluted passes. On a recent post he wrote “As I read your […]