The tapestries of Notre-Dame de Nantilly


The tapestries of Notre-Dame de Nantilly

The church of Notre Dame de Nantilly boasts an exceptional collection of 21 tapestries, woven in the 15th to 17th centuries in Aubusson, Tours and Gobelins, Paris. There are several other tapestries in Saumur, making this one of the rare towns in France to have such a rich heritage of wall coverings.
These tapestries essentially depict scenes from the life of the Virgin, to whom the church is dedicated : the birth and childhood of Mary, the Annunciation of the birth of Jesus, the Visitation of her cousin Elisabeth, pregnant with John the Baptist, the birth of Jesus, his childhood and his life with his parents, the Crucifixion and the Entombment and the Death of the Virgin, are all illustrated.

Other tapestries represent angels, some with musical instruments, others with instruments of the Passion of Christ.

These tapestries were used to solemnize religious festivals and serve as decoration in the church and on the streets during processions and pilgrimages.

Today they are part of the church’s heritage. To ensure their preservation they are only exhibited, in turn, during the key religious periods such as Christmas, Easter and during the summer.

A catalogue of the Saumur tapestries was published in 2019 as part of the exhibition « Parures de fête – Splendeurs des tapisseries de Saumur »
The tapestries of Notre Dame de Nantilly are presented in detail (in french) on the parish website of St Jeanne Delanoue https://saintejeannedelanoue.dioces... .