Westwork, south porch interior, church interior, St. Pierre

Westwork was begun in 1110-1115 with subsequent changes. Restorations by Viollet-le-Duc were undertaken in the 1850s.

The westwork and the interior of the porch

The westwork has a fortified look, especially because of the crenelations at its top. The porch serves as the actual entrance into the church.

Capitals in the porch

While many of these are foliate capitals, animals appear in the foliage or even seem to spit out the vines. See above, center.

Two violent themes--left: Samson slaying the lion, repeated symmetrically; center: animal violence; right: mother felines carrying their young


Center: the porch--portal into the church nave; right: nave with view into the chancel

The church was reconstructed in the 15th century. The apse and first three bays were rebuilt. The thick walls on the lower level of the four west bays date from the Romanesque period, however.

Painted geometric decoration on the walls

In 1964 the restoration of the decoration was completed. Here (center image) some of the original wall is left as an example of the 15th century painting.

Works Consulted or Quoted:
M. F. Hearn. Romanesque Sculpture: The Revival of Monumental Stone Sculpture in the Eleventh and Twelfth Centuries. Ithaca, NY: Cornell UP, 1981.
Meyer Schapiro. The Sculpture of Moissac. NY: Braziller, 1985.
M. Alison Stones. Extensive medieval website.

Go to Moissac Index.

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© 2007 Mary Ann Sullivan. I have photographed (on site), scanned, and manipulated all the images on these pages. Please feel free to use them for personal or educational purposes. They are not available for commercial purposes.