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Pompierre - Saint-Martin | by Martin M. Miles
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Pompierre - Saint-Martin

The parish church Saint-Martin was built mid 19th century, to replace a romanesque building, that was "beyond repair"- The portal, being the most valuable part of the old church was saved and got "reused". It carved late 12th century is for sure one of the finest examples of romanesque art in the Lorraine.


It is surprising, to find such an elaborate work of art in such a small village. The story behind is, that after merovingian king Clovis death (561), who had united the Frankish tribes, the kingdom got partioned between his sons, who then started a cruel family-war, to unite it again.


So in 577 at a place named "PONT de PIERRE" (= "Pompierre" = "stone bridge") three kings met to talk. Childebert (king of Austrasia), Chilperic I (king of Neustria) and Gontran (king of Burgundy). This meeting took place here in 577 - and to commemorate it a chapel was built, that during the 12th century (about 600 years after the meeting!) got replaced by a larger church. The portal seen here goes back to exactly that church.


"The Adoration if the Magi"


Within a very elaborate architectoral place (note the carvings on arches and pillars) the two left Magis are standing and wait, while the first if them is on his knees already, adoring. They are bearing the gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.


Matthew 2:11


"On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh."


The regally sitting "Virgin and Child" is in a very typical "pose". Most wooden romanesque sculptures of that times depicting "Virgin and Child" have this stoic expression.

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Taken in April 2011