Saint Jean Brévelay,, Guehenno in my Morbihan!

Moving right along in this fast pace world of travel in our days, I take you once again to the my beautiful Morbihan dept 56 of my lovely Brittany. We will go into towns off the beaten paths ,and some well known, and most that needs to be known!  Today , I will tell you about Saint Jean Brévelay and Guehenno, two unique close by towns of my Morbihan. Enjoy them as we do.

The town of Saint-Jean-Brévelay, was a Saint  fleeing the Norman looters, the Bretons temporarily fled to England. Upon their return to Brittany, they reported relics of a Bishop of Exham and York, who died in 721 in Beverly, where he founded a monastery. They then named their parish the name of the Saint, which gradually became Saint Jean Brévelay. In the middle ages, Saint Jean Brévelay was part of the Viscount of Rohan, divided into 20 lordships.  In the 18C, after 1797, the town embraced the Royal cause. During the Chouannerie, it was noted the passage of Georges Cadoudal, Lieutenant General of the Reds. Pierre Guillemot, called King of Bignan, one of the main chefs Chouans was also noticed passing here.

The Church of Saint-Jean-de-Brévelay  was built  from the 15C to the 19C. Dedicated to Saint John of Beverley, an English Saint of the Medieval Kingdom of Northumbria Bishop of York who founded the monastery and the town of Beverley in East Yorkshire, died in 721 and canonized in 1037. The church is in the form of a Latin cross, with warhead windows. The Church of Saint-Jean-de-Brévelay gathers parts built in several eras such as the Romanesque gate dates from the 15C, the transept and the choir were reworked in the 17C, the Chapel of St. Joseph added in the 17C, the current nave was built in 1825, the porch bell tower was completed in 1879. A very colorful Altarpiece 1640, in stone and marble,  occupies the background of the choir, with a large painting of Pentecost in the center, surrounded by two statues, Saint Peter holding the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, and Saint John of Beverley in Bishop with a pig.

City of Saint Jean Brevelay on heritage

Tourist office of the Central Morbihan on the town heritage

Saint Jean Brevelay

st jean brevelay

The battle of Mont-Guéhenno took place during the Chouannerie (the wars against the French revolution and for king). In 1799, a Republican (French revolutionaries) detachment was surprised and was destroyed by the Chouans near Guéhenno. The fate of the Republican prisoners is not known with certainty. According to some witnesses , the prisoners were shot.

The Church of St. Peter and St. John the Baptist is located in Guéhenno. Externally, there remains a gable with hooks, a door with braces, hooks and cabbage. On the left, touching the transept, a butt fort has been preserved, at the top of which is a stone Virgin. Inside, giving in the Choir, there remains an altar pool with crest appearing accompanied by a butt. The Church of St. Peter and St. John the Baptist done from the 16C up to the 19C. This church, which dates from 1859 , replaces an older Church of the 16C which was burned in 1794. From the ancient Church of the 16C, the sacristy was preserved in the south, and It’s pretty flamboyant door as well. Inside you can see, besides a 16C pool, a stone bas-relief from the old porch and depicting various scenes of the Passion and a Virgin to the Child in polychrome wood dated from the 18C. The cowl dates from the 19C. There is also a cranberry credence of the 16C which was updated during the restoration work in 1957.

Guehenno

Guehenno

Guehenno

City of Guehenno under renovation but come back soon

The Calvary of Guéhenno, which was one of the most beautiful Breton calvaries, was ransacked during the French revolution. The Calvary of Guéhenno is one of the seven monumental calvaries of Brittany and the only one located in the Dept 56 of Morbihan. At the time of the reign of terror, in 1794,during the French revolution, the architectural ensemble composed of the 16C Church (see above), the Calvary erected in 1550 and the ossuary, was devastated by the Republican troops. It is only fifty years later that the Church will be rebuilt and the Calvary restored. It will be necessary to await the arrival of Abbé Jacquot in the parish in 1853, so that the restoration actually begins.

Guehenno

Guehenno

An Altar, where the descent to the underworld is carved, is dominated by a pedestal where the scenes of prayer are depicted in the garden of olives, the flagellation, the crowning of thorns and the Entombment. On this pedestal rises a triple Cross from 1550, to the right and left the two thieves, on the central Cross, at the top, Christ with the Virgin and St. John, below a character crowned and half-lying, further down a Virgin of Pity. At the foot of the Cross, on the pedestal, is depicted Jesus carrying the cross between soldiers and Saint Véronique: at the angles are the figures of the four evangelists. The Entombment dates from 1853, and is composed of seven characters in 19C costume. The resurrection, dated 1853, appears on the two bases of the Calvary: we see the risen Jesus Christ appearing to the Holy women. In 1855, the perimeter of the Calvary was paved.

Guehenno

Guehenno

Official 7 Calvaries site on Guehenno in English

Tourist office of Central Morbihan on the Calvary of Guehenno

And again, you see simply beauty before your eyes, these are monumental examples of mankind and when you think of Europe devastated by two world wars and see these again brought back and or save is amazing the human spirit can still do anything. You owe to yourselves visiting in Brittany and see these marvels. We love them. Be welcome at Saint Jean Brévelay and Guéhenno in the Morbihan of course!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!

 

 

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