Tweety with beret in Rhone-Alps (France)



The prefecture of Ain is worth the trip for its Royal Monastery of Brou.

Royal Monastery of Brou

Monastery of Brou

Margaret of Austria was the wife of the Duke of Savoy Philibert II who died only three years after their wedding. To pay a tribute to the Duke, Margaret of Austria rebuilt a monastery in order to keep his tomb. As a matter of fact there are three tombs : the tomb of Philibert II, the tomb of his mother and the tomb of Margaret of Austria. Brou later became an Augustinian monastery until the French revolution.

The church is built in a Flemish Gothic style (Margaret of Austria was regent of the Netherlands), with glazed tiles (as we can find in Burgondy). Inside the church, we can notice the jube which is a dividing wall between the nave and the choir that nowadays remains in only a few churches. In the choir, there are stalls carved in oak, stained glass windows, but these are the three tombs that draw the attention. The tomb of Margaret of Austria and Philibert of Savoy are in two parts : above there is a recumbent figure (in marble) representing the deceased in a ceremonial dress (giving an image of life), and below there is a statue (in alabaster) representing the deceased naked but for a shroud (giving an image of death). There is a dog at their feet as a symbol of fidelity. The tombs of Margaret of Austria is an outstanding canopy.

The tomb of Margaret of Boubon, Philibert's mother, has only one part. It is placed in an alcove.

At last, one can not miss the beautiful alabaster altarpiece dedicated to the Virgin Mary in the adjoining chapel of the choir.