Account of a Tour in Normandy, Volume 2 eBook

Dawson Turner
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 249 pages of information about Account of a Tour in Normandy, Volume 2.
of women, some idling and staring, some asking charity and whining, and some conducting their little ones to the salutary-fountain.  Many are the infirmities and ailments which are relieved through the intercession of Saint Clotilda, after the patient has been plunged in the gelid spring.  A Parisian sceptic might incline to ascribe a portion of their cures to cold-bathing and ablution; but, at Andelys, no one ever thought of diminishing the veneration, inspired by the Christian queen of the founder of the monarchy.  Several children were pointed out to us, heretical strangers, as living proofs of the continuance of miracles in the Catholic church.  They had been cured on the preceding anniversary; for it is only on Saint Clotilda’s day that her benign influence is shed upon the spring.

Andelys possesses a valuable specimen of ancient domestic architecture.  The Great House[30] is a most sumptuous mansion, evidently of the age of Francis Ist; but I could gain no account of its former occupants or history.  I must again borrow from my friend’s vocabulary, and say, that it is built in the “Burgundian style.”  In its general outline and character, it resembles the house in the Place de la Pucelle, at Rouen.  Its walls, indeed, are not covered with the same profusion of sculpture; yet, perhaps, its simplicity is accompanied by greater elegance.—­The windows are disposed in three divisions, formed by slender buttresses, which run up to the roof.  They are square-headed, and divided by a mullion and transom.—­The portal is in the centre:  it is formed by a Tudor arch, enriched with deep mouldings, and surmounted by a lofty ogee, ending with a crocketed pinnacle, which transfixes the cornice immediately above, as well as the sill of the window, and then unites with the mullion of the latter.—­The roof takes a very high pitch.—­A figured cornice, upon which it rests, is boldly sculptured with foliage.—­The chimneys are ornamented by angular buttresses.—­All these portions of the building assimilate more or less to our Gothic architecture of the sixteenth century; but a most magnificent oriel window, which fills the whole of the space between the centre and left-hand divisions, is a specimen of pointed architecture in its best and purest style.  The arches are lofty and acute.  Each angle is formed by a double buttress, and the tabernacles affixed to these are filled with statues.  The basement of the oriel, which projects from the flat wall of the house, after the fashion of a bartizan, is divided into compartments, studded with medallions, and intermixed with tracery of great variety and beauty.  On either side of the bay, there are flying buttresses of elaborate sculpture, spreading along the wall.—­As, comparatively speaking, good models of ancient domestic architecture are very rare, I would particularly recommend this at Andelys to the notice of every architect, whom chance may conduct to Normandy.—­This building, like too many others of the same class in

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Account of a Tour in Normandy, Volume 2 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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