WHAT’S GOING ON IN NORMANDY?

July 20, 2014

Nadine and I visited Caen on our way back from Brittany, heading straight for the Abbeye aux Hommes. It is not always wise to revisit the past. Thirty years ago, while studying Romanesque architecture at the Courtauld in London, I thought this church built by William the Conqueror very beautiful. Now it seems heavy and heartless, like the man himself. But what did we spy lying on William’s tomb? Rolls of paper, clearly messages of some kind. I sneaked across the red cord and snatched one, returning quickly to a pew to read it. Prayers to the brutal Duke!!! Thanks for the healing of illnesses! Requests for help in following the true path in life! Will William generate a cult? It happened with Genghis, so anything is possible. But in the land of Voltaire? I was shocked.

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