Saint Julien le Pauvre

Saint Julien le Pauvre (39)

The church of Saint Julian the Poor stands in the Place Viviani, the same place in which the oldest tree in Paris is, a white acacia planted in 1620. In 1601 Jean Robin brought some seeds of this spice from America and planted them in his garden. Later they planted some cuttings such as the one that stands imposing before the church.

It is believed that there are at least three patron saints of this church, but it is probable that the saint to which it is consecrated is Saint Julian the Hospitaller.

It was the Cluny monks of Longpont who ordered the old 6th-century abbey that had stood here to be rebuilt. Around 1165 they ordered a priory to be built respecting the foundations and ground floor plan of the original. 

Dante prayed in this church for a while during his stay in Paris.

The University held its meetings here until in 1564 the students pillaged the church in protest at the choice of a rector. The incident speeded up the decline of the priory, which was destroyed in the 17th century. The central nave and side nave lost several sections and the Gothic façade was replaced by the current one. The church was used during the revolution as a salt warehouse and from 1889 belonged to the order of the Melkites, a branch of the Greek orthodox church.

The outside of Saint Julian the Poor features its tic flying buttresses, which support the apse and date back to the 12th century. 

The interior features pillars, the capitals of which are decorated with Harpies: fabulous birds, with the front of a woman and the body of a bird of prey.

Chamber and sacred music concerts are regularly held in this church. Check its listings, since they are very frequent.

Whether for a concert or a visit, do not miss the chance to take in one of the oldest churches in Paris.

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