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(Canton of Gournay-en-Bray, Seine-Maritime)

Collegiate church of Saint-Hildevert

    The mostly 12th c. collegiate church of Saint-Hildevert is composed of a Romanesque nave with six bays, aisles, a transept and a three bay chancel, also with side aisles, ending in a flat chevet with a large 14th c. window opening. The nave elevation is on three levels: large circular arcades resting on square pillars with engaged columns, narrow bays giving onto the roof of the aisles and tall, broad windows. The roof is done with intersecting rib vaults. In the transept, only the north arm absidiole is still in place; over the crossing there once stood a tower which disappeared during the 17th century. Two bays on the right of the chancel are still Romanesque; they have an identical elevation to that of the nave. The rest of the chancel was rebuilt in the 13th c.

The Romanesque capitals of the church of Saint-Hildevert are doubtless among the most interesting in Upper Normandy. Most of them are decorated with palmettes and interlacing; a few bear chequered patterns, chevrons and leaf motifs; still others are decorated with figurative scenes, clumsily handled but often very expressive.

Henry DecaŽns

 

Bibliography

- MUSSET Lucien : Normandie romane, tome II, p. 27-28 et p. 273. Zodiaque : Sainte-Marie de la Pierre-qui-Vire, 1974.