18 December, 2007

Fenétre dans la coupole.

Here three things interest:

The first is the shape of the arch. That means something but I forget what.

The second is the window in the dome. What use could it have been?

The third is the blocked apex of the dome.

On the next visit I hope to get up there to check the top side and also get a shot at what that window is pointing at because it isn't there to provide a scenic view. Maybe it is there to let sunlight, moonlight or starlight in but if so why?

There is something similar built into the Panttheon at Rome. The difference is at Rome the apex is open. Might this dome at Aulnay have been too?

What might this be?

Maybe this is like the elephant. The stone cutter never saw one and only cut from a description.

It may also be there is a reason things like these were built into the churches. Remember, the churches were without question the greatest public expenditure the community could make.

16 December, 2007

Chapiteau du barbu.

The point here is to show something of a different sort. What might this be? A head with two monsters? If anyone has a thought let me know.

"In this sign, you will conquer"

This bit of ruble is thought to be the neck piece of a statue of Constantine I the "Libérateur de l'Eglise" or if you take the word of the local people the horse belonged to Charlemagne. A similar kind of confusion existed at another church over another equestrian statue. That one is in Melle and in time we should get there.

The excesses of the revolution are credited with the damage. Many churches and monuments keep ruble of this sort about on the off chance it will aid in reconstruction of some of the lost past. In this case the stone causes a problem because at Melle even as the intact statue of the "Chavalier" is labled as Constantine the guide book explains they meant a local duke.

13 December, 2007

Four silent men.

With a little restoration they do not need to say much.

Chapiteau des Elephants.

We have been here before, but without Saint Pierre.

Last time round I let Gilles my brother-in-law and the photographer here have the last word on the elephants. Sorry Gilles, the French could have seen elephants.

There was that Hannibal thing and Claudius also marched with them. The dates are wrong but who remembers dates.

Also, if the Romans could build a fort almost next to the site of this church and crucify Saint Peter who is to say they did not keep a troop of elephants handy? They look like elephants.

12 December, 2007


Over the next few days and weeks, maybe months, photos of old stones should appear here.

This starts with Eglise Saint-Pierre d'Aulnay.

There is a lot more to say about Aulnay. Each page will stand on its own. There is no order or plan.

This is a view from the north-east.

Just think about it.

10 December, 2007


A few weeks ago some of the family got together.

We had lunch.

We went for a walk.

02 July, 2007

Something my wife told me. (4)

Giving credit where credit is due, my wife told me she saw Namkhar Drimé Rinpotché study the crowd by looking at one and then the other and passing on to the next starting at one end of the crowd and moving on until, presumably, every attendant had received his attention.

All I recall was a long pause before the start of a meeting. It didn't even strike me to question what we were waiting for.

What do you suppose he saw?

Take a look.

Imagine how he might have seen that crowd, one by one, through centuries-old eyes.

As It Is. (3)

Passing through something cloaked in the guise of a acolyte may strike some as dishonest. But consider this: to quietly participate is to participate.

What comes of participation?

Here we have Mapi and Namkhar Drimé Rinpotché on the first afternoon of our distractions.

Mapi is the translator from the Tibetan to French. The English and Spanish that weekend flowed through the French so Mapi was the key link in this translation.

What we did had never been performed in Europe before. What was experienced and participated in was Tibet being translated to Europe. I was a part of that. So were a lot of others.