Milan 2015 – Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio

The Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio was first built between 379-386. It’s undergone various rebuilds and restorations…

…and the current structure is 12thC.

Even the anti-burgler devices are stylish.

As ever, I was drawn to the stone carvings. This friar…

…a centaur…

…a green man…

…weird creatures…

…weird creatures with big teeth.

This is the ‘devil’s column’. The legend is that the holes were made by the devil when he got stuck by the horns when fighting St Ambrose. It’s said that if you put your ear to it, you can hear the sounds of hell. I did, and I didn’t.

February 2015 – Commagny Priory

It’s been a while hasn’t it? In February found me back in Moulins-Engilbert. The Boy was having a ‘writer’s retreat’, while I had a retreat. Last summer I decided that I was going to take up a new hobby, visiting Cluny Abbeydaughter houses‘.  Given that there are 181 or so, this will take a while.
The Benedictine Saint- Hilaire Priory in Commagny, isn’t a ‘Sites Clunisien’, as the community was probably attached directly to Rome. Although I couldn’t add it to my ‘I-SPY’ list, hey it’s a nice Romanesque church, so why not.

The church is XIIth century, and the priory house (which is a private residence nowadays) was built in 1336.

The day I visited was absolutely freezing, so I didn’t linger inside for long.

The roof was absolutely beautiful, rather like an upside down Viking longboat.

The light was beautiful that day.
I adored the stairs. They look like an enormous pencil sharpening.


I must pop back again as apparently there’s a holy well, mentioned in ‘The Golden Bough‘ no less. I don’t think The Weeping Cross would forgive me if I didn’t track it down.