Basilica Church Notre Dame de la Joie of Pontivy!

This is a nice town up the road from us and we have visited plenty of course, even one my sons worked ! So many interesting things to see and one that is a must is the Basilica Notre Dame de la Joie of Pontivy! I like to update the post for you and me; hope you enjoy the post as I.

And I bring you to the Basilica Church Notre Dame de la Joie of Pontivy. We only live about 40 minutes from here by car.  The church is at Place Bourdonnay-du-Clézio . Built in the style neo gothic flamboyant,the statues of  Notre-Dame de la Joie, sculpture in a trunk of oak wood and of  Notre-Dame de la Délivrance, revered by the pregnant women are two wonderful sights to see inside.

The Notre-Dame-de-la-Joie Basilica (b. Church 1534), is located in the center of the medieval town of Pontivy. It is the old Saint-Ivy church, started in 1534 and dedicated to Notre-Dame in 1696. The church was consecrated basilica in 1959.  This building, rebuilt in the 16C in the shape of a Latin cross, with a nave with three vessels and flanked by aisles in the nave, measures 45 meters by 18 approximately.


Before the 19C restorations, the church included a nave of four spans, with aisles, a transept and a choir with a flat chevet. The square of the transept alone was arched with warheads. In the 19C, the whole church was vaulted and the choir flanked by collaterals extending the aisles. It has a large square tower, bordered by a flamboyant gallery, and surmounted by a polygonal stone turret, amortized in slate, and probably unfinished.

The exterior decoration is flamboyant, and the western portal, divided by a trumeau into two bays, flanked by decorated pilasters, is decorated with foliage of vine leaves finely carved: one sees there the shield with nine twins of Rohan. The windows, whose mullions were redone in the 19C, are surmounted, outside, by gables with crawlers decorated with sticks and cabbages. The stained glass windows date from the 19C. The stained glass window which represents the Assumption of the Virgin dates from 1902. The spire of the church, the aisles of the choir and the vaults of the nave date from 1886.

The altarpiece and the high altar, in carved stone and marble, are from 1782: the front bears the name of Jehovah in Hebrew characters and a marble tabernacle with an ornate door surmounts the high altar. It is on this altar that the federates signed their act of union (bretons and angevins swearing alliageance to the French revolution) January 19, 1790. The altarpiece of the main altar represents Saint Ivy as a bishop, surrounded by Saint Peter, Saint Paul and characters such as the Duke and the Duchess of Rohan who contributed with their donation to rebuild part of the church. The altarpiece of Calvary in the south arm, in carved wood, dates from the 16-17C. The large bronze desk from the 17C is a gift from the Duke of Rohan, the bird’s talons cling to a large bronze sphere which symbolizes the globe. The organs date from 1836: the case, built by Dominique and Aristide Cavaillé-Coll, was redesigned by Debierre in 1878 and by Gobin in 1960.



The painting entitled “Descent from the Cross” dates from 1635 and was restored in 1974. The figures of Our Lady of Joy, carved from an oak trunk, and of Our Lady of Deliverance venerated by pregnant women are part of the many statues of the church. It also houses the polychrome wooden statues of Saint Catherine and Saint Barbe. The silver lamp dates from the 17C. It was offered to the community in 1696 in recognition of the intervention of Our Lady of Joy to stop the plague epidemic which raged in the country.  Today a marble plaque, to the right of the high altar, marks the place where the heart of General de Lourmel rests. The large bronze desk, which can still be seen in the choir, is a gift from the Duke of Rohan.


The Morbihan dept 56 Tourist Board on the Basilica Church Notre Dame de la Joie in French :

The Bretagne region Tourist Board on Pontivy in English:

There you go folks, a dandy in my beautiful Morbihan and lovely Bretagne. Hope you enjoy the post and do come to see the wonderful Basilica Church of Our Lady of Joy in city center Pontivy.

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

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