Church of Saint-Sulpice, Paris  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Saint-Sulpice is a Roman Catholic church in Paris, France, on the east side of the Place Saint-Sulpice within the rue Bonaparte, in the Luxembourg Quarter of the 6th arrondissement. At 113 metres long, 58 metres in width and 34 metres tall, it is only slightly smaller than Notre-Dame and thus the second largest church in the city. It is dedicated to Sulpitius the Pious. Construction of the present building, the second church on the site, began in 1646. During the 18th century, an elaborate gnomon, the Gnomon of Saint-Sulpice, was constructed in the church.

The Marquis de Sade and Charles Baudelaire were baptized in Saint-Sulpice (1740 and 1821, respectively), and the church also saw the marriage of Victor Hugo to Adèle Foucher (1822). Louise Élisabeth de Bourbon and Louise Élisabeth d'Orléans, grand daughters of Louis XIV and Madame de Montespan are buried in the church. Louise de Lorraine, duchesse de Bouillon was buried here in 1788, wife of Charles Godefroy de La Tour d'Auvergne.

References in popular culture

Act III, scene ii of Massenet's opera Manon takes place in Saint-Sulpice, where Manon convinces des Grieux to run away with her once more.

Abbé Herrera from Splendeurs et misères des courtisanes by Honoré de Balzac celebrated Mass in the church and lived nearby in the rue Cassette.

The fashionable public side of Saint-Sulpice inspired Joris-Karl Huysmans perversely to set action there in his 1891 novel Là-Bas, dealing with Satanism in which the ritual magician "Eliphas Levi" attended the seminary attached to the church.

References to the church of Saint-Sulpice are found in the so-called Dossiers Secrets that were planted in the Bibliothèque Nationale in the 1960s.

In Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince's The Templar Revelation (1997), Saint-Sulpice is noted.

Dan Brown's 2003 novel The Da Vinci Code, an international bestseller that brought crowds of tourists to Saint-Sulpice. This note has been on display in the church:

(...) Contrary to fanciful allegations in a recent best-selling novel, this [the line in the floor] is not a vestige of a pagan temple. No such temple ever existed in this place. It was never called a «Rose-Line». It does not coincide with the meridian traced through the middle of the Paris Observatory which serves as a reference for maps where longitudes are measured in degrees East or West of Paris. (...) Please also note that the letters «P» and «S» in the small round windows at both ends of the transept refer to Peter and Sulpice, the patron saints of the church, and not an imaginary «Priory of Sion».

In 2005, the Archdiocese of Paris refused Ron Howard permission to film inside Saint-Sulpice when he was making The Da Vinci Code.




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Church of Saint-Sulpice, Paris" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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