Saint Andrew

Saint Andrew 1st century

©EPV/Didier Saulnier

Apostle 1st century

The decision to have monumental sculpted decoration on the balustrade and the pediment of the Royal Chapel was taken in around 1705. The carefully chosen subject matter of the decoration mixes allegory with great figures of Christianity. The four evangelists rub shoulders with the twelve apostles, the four Fathers of the Latin Church, the four Fathers of the Greek Church and six allegories of Christian virtue.

Jean Théodon (1645-1713)

Date sculpted

2.84 metres, including plinth

Tonnerre stone

The restoration of the Royal Chapel

saint Andrew

The apostle Saint Andrew is portrayed as an elderly man whose naked body is covered only by a wrap around his loins. His face, framed by a long beard and short hair, is turned towards the X-shaped cross on which he is leaning. A fisherman on the Sea of Galilee like his younger brother Saint Peter, Saint Andrew was the first apostle to follow Jesus. Jacques de Voragine’s golden legend describes his epic apostolate after Pentecost, first in Asia Minor on the shores of the Black Sea and finally in Greece, where he was crucified on the orders of the Roman authorities. Particularly venerated by the Orthodox Church, he is also the Patron Saint of Scotland.

Saint Andrew - detail

© EPV/Thomas Garnier

Jean Théodon

He spent 30 years in Rome (1676 - 1705), a period which played an essential role in his career. First benefiting from a pension from the Academy of France, he sculpted the Terms of Summer and Winter (gardens of Versailles). He produced many commissions for Popes Innocent XII and Clement XI. On his return to France in 1705, the sculptor worked at the Invalides, the Royal Chapel of Versailles and Marly. His very personal style involved great precision and a certain degree of rigidity, emphasising the verticality of reclining figures.

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