Eglise Saint-Léonard


Patrimoine culturel

The lovely church of Videlles was built during the 12th century and then expanded later. It went through several historical twists.

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The church is located in the middle of Videlles and was built at the end of the 12th century. Its bell tower is made of sandstone with four gables and is remarkable for the Middle Age. Its top was elevated with a gabled roof and gargoyles during the 15th century. Those successive works helped to triple the size of the church.

During the siege of Etampes in 1652, the church was looted, like many other churches in close villages. It was also possibly damaged during several wars as a big part of the church was rebuilt during the 18th century.

The old bell tower was classified as part of the Monuments Historiques in 1926. The bell from 1646 is also classified and can be seen in the nave. Inside of the church, several paintings and a Corinthian style retable representing Virgin Mary can be seen. The old rooster that was on top of the church has been exposed inside since 1980. He was already once removed during the French Revolution. On the walls, we can see some traces of an old litera funeris of the ancient lord of Videlles called Marc-Antoine Front de Beaupoil de Saint-Aulaire who died in 1759.

This church is dedicated to Saint-Léonard (Saint Leonard of Noblac) also known under the name of Léonard de Noblat. He was a Frank noble under the reign of Clovis during the 6th century. He is supposed to have been converted to Christianity with Clovis. He was so close to him that he was allowed to visit and free prisoners. Saint Leonard freed a lot of prisoners throughout his life. After a life of being a hermit just surrounded by his disciples in a forest in the Limousin where he prayed for the birth of a male descendant to Clovis, the Frank King gave him lands to build an abbey. It is located in the village of Saint-Léonard-de-Noblat located in the French area of Haute-Vienne. His tombstone is situated in the collegiale of the village which is classified by the UNESCO. He is the patron saint of prisoners.

SOURCE: Mairie de Videlles, “Le Patrimoine Religieux de Milly-la-Forêt et de la Communauté de Communes des 2 Vallées” des Amis de Milly-en-Gâtinais et Environs, Parc Naturel Régional du Gâtinais Français

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