Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Cluny Museum

*****No quilting here, just reminiscing about the Paris trip again :) ******

This cute little bird entertained us while we were eating lunch in the shadow of Notre Dame - so cute! We threw it some crumbs of our sandwiches, and watched it eat a big red something - we were kind of hoping it was just a tomato out of someone's lunch! After eating we consulted our handy dandy map and made our way toward the quilt shop - when we found it, the shop was closed for lunch, so we decided to go ahead and visit the Cluny Museum because that was on our list. It was definitely a summer day, and the weather was nice and warm!

Here is a cool sundial outside the museum. Neither one of us had ever seen one mounted on a wall before so we thought it was pretty neat. There was no line at this museum, it's not really big, but we really wanted to see the Unicorn Tapestries! It was included on our museum pass, but we had to pay a small fee to rent a pair of audio guides. They were nice, but unfortunately I had issues with pushing the wrong button on mine and ending back up at the start! The Cluny museum is officially known as the Musée National du Moyen Âge (National Museum of the Middle Ages). It dates back to the 1300's and has a nice collection of midieval articacts, and was once the site of Roman baths.

Lots of neat statues and architectural details! Very warm and stuffy (no air conditioning here!) but we enjoyed rambling through the exhibits.

These are the original heads of the statues from Notre Dame! A man saved them, buried them in his yard, and years later they were dug up! This was one of the neatest exhibits. There was a lot of information about the stone carving industry - there were a lot of people who were employed carving many of the statues and architectural details on the churches and palaces and buildings.

More carving, and I wish I could remember the significance of this one. It must have been mentioned for a reason on the audio guide! What I wish I had picture of were the tapestries. They are kept dimly lit to reduce aging the fabrics, but they were wonderful. It was very interesting that they were made in factories of sorts - not all of course, but they were not all one of a kind items! The Lady and the Unicorn series was fabulous, and it was very interesting to hear about what each thing on each tapestry represented. Each of the first 5 represents on of our five senses, and the last - well we were given several interpretations and were left to decide for ourselves what the final one represented!

We had a delightful couple of hours here, but I was eager to head to the quilt shop! Le Rouvray was a delightful shop and I enjoyed my time there - next we head out to the Arch de Triomphe - more stairs to climb!

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