Convent des Jacobins, Toulouse!

And here is a monument that we have visited but hardly taken any photos or at least I cannot find them chez moi. So on this trip I made sure visited and took photos of a wonderfully architecturally and historical monument of the pink city of Toulouse. 

I will like to tell you briefly  on the Convent des Jacobins. Here is my take on it. It is well place in city center walking distance from the Capitole and well worth the walk.


The Convent of the Jacobins of Toulouse, is made up of a church called Church of the Jacobins, a cloister, a chapter house, a refectory and a chapel, the Saint-Antonin chapel. It was built by the order of the preaching brothers, a begging order whose first convent of the male branch was founded in 1215 in Toulouse by Dominique de Guzmán, ( Spanish,Domingo Núñez de Guzmán) future Saint Dominique, in order to promote the preaching of the Gospel and fight against the Cathar heresy. These buildings, entirely made of brick, are considered as jewels of Languedoc Gothic art in terms of monastic construction of the 13C and 14C.


The preaching brothers were called Dominicans from the 13C and also Jacobins, much later, in the modern period, in reference to the great convent of Paris located rue Saint-Jacques. Since 1369 the church has housed the relics (first order relics) of Saint Thomas Aquinas, to which it is dedicated. It is also in these buildings that the old university of Toulouse was established for several centuries from its foundation in 1229 until its suppression during the French revolution.


The Convent of the Jacobins, abandoned by the Dominicans with the prohibition of their order during the French revolution, is confiscated as national property and used as barracks and as a depot. One part was allocated to the city of Toulouse in 1810, but the other continued to house an army of horses, and more than 5,000 cubic meters of land to as ground. The side chapels are slightly damaged to enlarge the place. The church becomes a vast stable while the Saint-Antonin chapel becomes a veterinary infirmary. Finally the cloister is demolished three-quarters to improve the passage of horses. In 1865, the monument was exchanged in the city of Toulouse for land where barracks were built and the army left the site.


In 2016, on the occasion of the 800th anniversary of the Dominicans, the Saint Antonin Chapel of the Couvent des Jacobins hosts the exhibition “Dominican Trajectories” in order to reconnect with the medieval roots of this Order born in Toulouse

The church was considered the most beautiful Dominican church in Christian Europe. It measures 80 meters long by 20 meters wide creating an impressive interior volume. The stone piers are 22 meters high. The palm tree is a masterpiece unique in the world rising to 28 meters in height. The interior is painted in polychrome decor with Toulouse crosses here and there. Stained glass windows inspired by 14C western roses were made by Max Ingrand in 1955.  The church was consecrated several times, notably on October 22, 1385, and the return of the relics of Saint Thomas Aquinas.


The bell tower rests on the north side of the church and is 45 meters high. It was built between 1275 and 1298 in a similar way to that of the nearby Saint-Sernin basilica. It is an octagonal bell tower of four recessed floors pierced with twin bays covered with a miter arch. Its original arrow was destroyed during the Revolution. The cloister is made up of four galleries built between 1306 and 1309. The colonnades are in gray Saint-Béat marble and the capitals are decorated with plant sculptures. They support a lean-to roof resting on arches of bricks, themselves resting on the capitals.


The chapter house dating from between 1299 and 1301 is located in the western gallery of the cloister. It is a vast room, the vault of which rests on two fine prismatic marble columns. The refectory is located in the extension of the eastern gallery of the cloister. It is a large room with diaphragm arches bearing a paneled frame. It measures 17 m in height and is one of the largest monastic refectories of medieval times. It now hosts temporary exhibitions. The Saint-Antonin chapel is located between the refectory and the chapter house. It was built and decorated between 1335 and 1341 at the expense of Dominique Grima, brother preacher and bishop of Pamiers. It is intended to receive the tombs of the canons and the remains of its founder.


Its decoration is painted in tempera and represents the second vision of the Apocalypse. Near the false windows with white lily flowers on a blue background, there are angels with a series of instruments, including a viola, a bagpipe, a harp, a portable organ, a double drone and a psaltery. The walls display paintings from the life of Saint Antoninus, patron of the Pamiers Cathedral.

As said a monument worth your time to visit, I say a must while in Toulouse. Here are the webpages to help you plan your trip to it

Official Convent des Jacobins of Toulouse

Tourist office of Toulouse on the Convent des Jacobins

And there you go a must to see . Convent des Jacobins.  Enjoy Toulouse,the pink city of France, a must to see I said.. 

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


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