Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Musee Nationale du Moyen Age - Paris

In an earlier post we mentioned that our apartment was just around the corner from the St Michel fountain so it was just a short walk along Boulevard St Michel to Boulevard St Germaine and you come across the Gallo Roman baths in full view behind the iron bar fence. At night flood lights bring the ruins to life. Along the walk you will find some great book and CD shops to browse through or maybe stop at a cafe and enjoy a coffee or wine while watching the passing crowd. The collection of Moyen or middle ages art is housed in the Musee de Cluny, a 15th Century building that incorporates the ruins of the Gallo-Roman baths.
The Gallo-Roman baths or Thermes de Cluny - from the 3rd Century.
The museum is entered by a small street behind the intersection of the two Boulevards. Entering through an arched doorway you see a serene courtyard garden and you forget that you are in the hub of the Latin Quarter.
The Building
Entering the doorways into the courtyard, you can turn your back on Paris and drift into the middle ages.

The Stained Glass

The Statues

And Wood Sculptured Scenes

The main attraction of the museum are the tapestries depicting the Lady and the Unicorn from the 15th Century - for some reason Sue decided to sit this one out, but I have to say I was taken back by the artistry and craftsmanship of these tapestries. The photos you see here were stolen from Google images as photos were not allowed and you can understand why when looking tapestries of over 500 years old. How fragile they must be and susceptible to light.

Definitely a museum worth a second visit.

Take a visit yourself at their website.

Did you know that Mary Tudor once lived at Cluny - here's a film clip and some music to go with your morning tea or evening port - enjoy.


  1. That looks well worth a visit I did not even know that there were Gallo-Roman baths around Paris!!
    When you visit Oradour-sur-Glane, not far away is Chassenon which has amazing Roman remains. They are finding more and more all the time and each time I have visited, I have been very impressed. They are supposed to be the best preserved in Europe and well worth a visit. Diane

  2. Diane,
    There are more ruins in Paris in the form of a small ampitheatre somehere behind the Jarin de Plantes. It's converted into a playground and when we made the visit it had youths playing basketball and mother's with their children enjoying the area.
    I may post on it in the future.

  3. Just catching up with your mid-week post after having been out of town for the last week and of course far away from computers and normal civilization.
    I would so love to step inside that wonderful world of the moyen age - Paris is like that - you turn a corner walk through a door and you're transported to another age - Wonderful!

  4. Our 26 year old son just spent 4 days in Paris before moving on to Leeds for two years. He said he doesn't know if he hates Paris or wants to live there.


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