Saint-Merri

Paris, France

Saint-Merri

The Church of Saint-Merri or Église Saint-Merry) is a parish church in Paris, located near the Centre Pompidou along the rue Saint Martin, in the 4th arrondissement on the Rive Droite (Right Bank). It is dedicated to the 8th century abbot of Autun Abbey, Saint Mederic, who came to Paris on pilgrimage and later died there in the year 700. In 884 Mederic was declared patron saint of the Right Bank.

A small chapel, called Saint-Pierre-des-Bois, existed on the in what was then a clearing. In about 700 AD. Saint Merri was buried there. Mederic, the future Saint Merri, was born in Autun in Burgundy, and is believed to have lived in the Benedictine Abbey there. He later went into the desert as a hermit. On his return, he moved to Paris, because he wished to live near the Tomb of Saint Symphorien, founder of the Abbey of Autun, which was within the Church of Saint-Germain-des-Pres in Paris. In 884 he was chosen as the patron saint of th Right Bank of Paris. In about 890 Gozlin, the Bishop of Paris, had his remained exhumed, and a particularly rich reliquary created for him, The church was constructed to contain it. Gradually it became known simply as Saint Merri.

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