Saint-Leu-Saint-Gilles church, located in the heart of Paris, dates back to the 13th Century (1230). It is one of the few religious monuments left from that period, standing along the old Roman road (Rue Saint Denis) leading to Saint-Denis, Pontoise and Rouen, which later became the triumphal road for royal entries into the capital. When Saint-Gilles chapel became too small in the 14th Century, the current Saint-Leu church was built (1310), which explains the two saints in its name. It was reconstructed several times in the following centuries.
Due to the break-through of the Boulevard Sébastopol, the choir was shortened with 5 meters and three chapels were demolished mid 19th century. Victor Baltard restorated the church, adding lateral chapels. Also, a tower and clock were added (1858).
The nave is built in gothic style, whereas the choir is built in renaissance-style.
The church is the home of an ancient religious alliance, les Chevaliers du Saint Sépulcre de Jérusalem.
The organ of Saint-Leu-Saint-Gilles was built in 1788 by François-Henri Clicquot in the case of the former organ built by Guy Jolly in 1658-1659, which was an extension of an organ built before 1580 and moderated by Mathieu Langhedul (1603) and Pierre Pescheur (1619). The frame-work of the organ still dates to this ancient organ (before 1580). The lateral extension of the case of the GO and case of the positif is done by Clicquot, as is the instrument itself. Restorations were carried out by Suret (1855) and Mutin (1912).
In 1974 the organ was damaged by a fire and since then, the organ is not playable anymore. It awaits an comprehensive restoration. An association was founded in 2012 to raise funds for such a restoration.
The organ has 14 stops from before the revolution (11 completely, 3 partial) and 9-10 stops of Suret and 2 stops of Mutin. So, a considerable part of the instrument of Clicquot is preserved, an exciting notion, which raises the question which principles should be the guidance for a future restoration of this unique instrument.
|Main builder||History||Latest restauration|
1788 - FH Clicquot
1855 - Suret
1910 - Mutin
Famous organists in the past: C. Racquet
Masses with organ: -
AUDIO: not available
Specific links: -