Monument to Louis de Brézé - Rouen Cathedral

walwyn Tue, 09/06/2011 - 20:48
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Louis de Breze

 

This monument to Louis de Brézé (d1531) is the work of Jean Goujon (1510-1572)1 who was commissioned by Louis wife, Diane de Poitiers.2 Louis was the son of King Charles VII of France's illegitimate daughter Charlotte de France. Charlotte was murdered in 1477 by her husband Jacques de Brézé when he found her in bed with one of his huntsmen. King Louis XI of France had him imprisoned and under sentance of death, but he was eventually released by Charles VIII of France in 1486.3

 

Louis was Comte de Maulevrier, Seigneur d' Anet, Grand Sénéchal of Normandy and "Grand Huntsman" of France. His estate at Château d'Anet in the Eure valley, was part of the royal hunting preserve. After his first wife, Catherine de Dreux, died he married the fifteen year old Diane de Poitiers who was 40 years younger then him.2

 

Louis de Breze

 

The monument is supported by four columns of black marble with alabaster capitals and base. The effigy is made of white marble features are convulsed as if just in death.

 

Monument of Louis de Breze

 

At his feet are the Virgin and Child which once was adorned with candles, figurines, and prayers. An inscription on the left of the monument reads:

O Louis de Brézé, ce tombeau a été construit Par Diane de Poitiers, désolée de la mort de son époux. Elle te fut inséparable et très fidèle épouse Autant elle le fut dans le lit conjugal autant elle le sera dans le tombeau.

 

Monument of Louis de Breze

 

Monument of Louis de Breze

 

At the side of the monument are four caryatid crowned with flowers, the pair on the right representing prudence and glory, and the two on the left victory and faith.

 

Monument of Louis de Breze

 

Between these cariatides is an equestrian statue in white marble of Louis de Brézé.