Sacred Paris

A Guide to the Churches, Synagogues, and the Grand Mosque in the City of Light

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Pub Date 19 Apr 2022 | Archive Date 03 May 2022
St. Martin's Press, St. Martin's Griffin


From the author of Hidden Gardens of Paris and The Streets of Paris comes a beautifully illustrated guide to the history of Paris through its renowned and beloved places of worship.

When visiting the City of Light, the spirit of Paris can be felt everywhere. It holds a sacred history that goes beyond words, beyond religion, and its legendary places of worship are truly its crown jewels.

Susan Cahill's Sacred Paris is a guide for seasoned Parisian visitors, novices, and armchair travelers to the historic religious sites of the city, from the well-known landmarks to the sacred spots off the beaten track, from the magnificent towers of Notre-Dame and the sweeping arches of the Grand Mosque to the serenity of Saint-Julien-le-Pauvre. This spiritual tour is interwoven with the artistic and cultural history of Paris, from the medieval Crusades through the Resistance of World War II. Stand in the basilica of Saint-Denis, where Joan of Arc prayed with her soldiers in the Hundred Years' War, and gaze at the murals of Saint-Sulpice painted by Eugene Delacroix, or climb the hill to the Gothic Notre-Dame d’Auvers that inspired Vincent van Gogh’s beloved works.

Organized by the major geographical sections of the city—Ile de la Cite; the Latin Quarter on the Left Bank; Montparnasse; Northern Paris on the Right Bank; the Marais—each chapter is accompanied by Marion Ranoux’s beautiful four-color photographs. Also included are lists of “Nearbys”: gardens, bistros, librairies, museums, and other points of interest to round out your visit.

From the author of Hidden Gardens of Paris and The Streets of Paris comes a beautifully illustrated guide to the history of Paris through its renowned and beloved places of worship.

When visiting the...

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ISBN 9781250239686
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Featured Reviews

Susan Cahill shares, once again, her knowledge and love for Paris. Being one who also loves Paris, I thoroughly enjoy Ms.. Cahill's extensive research and the sharing of her knowkedge. Her voice is pleasant and professional yet personal enough to make her readers feel as though she's sharing secrets. Well done!

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This is an amazing guide to the churches, synagogues and Grand Mosque in Paris. I've been lucky enough to visit several of the churches included in this book. Some are major tourist destinations like Notre Dame and Sainte-Chappelle and others are smaller but still have long histories. Susan Cahill gives the location, metro stop and hours, if available for the location. Then she includes 2-3 pages of information about each church. She might tell why it was built, or what is historically important. Or she'll describe it architecturally or mention the art inside. I like that when talking of a Protestant church she gives context to that religion in the very Catholic France. She includes Vincent Van Gogh's Montmartre in d'Auver-sur Oise (outside Paris). That section focuses on Van Gogh. I've visited there doing exactly what she describes and envisioning Van Gogh's last months. The church itself wouldn't be memorable except that Van Gogh painted it. This is more in depth than a basic guide book in its focus. I first time visitor to France would want a more traditional guide. But this would be a great addition to a guide book or for someone who enjoys a focus on churches. I was in Paris in March of 2020 and left the city as the world shut down for Covid19. I can't wait to return and now have some new churches to seek out on my visit. Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. (Note: I did not comment on photos because my ARC did not have any. But according to the description the final book will have photos included.)

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