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Off to the head of the cork!

Have fun discovering the historic heart of Troyes! From St-Urbain to the Cathedral…

 

Photo credit © Sergey Novikov – Fotolia

 

From St-Urbain to the Cathedral...

Seen from above, the historic heart of Troyes is shaped like a champagne cork!

The bottom of the cork (on the town hall side) is called the BODY, while the top of the cork (on the cathedral side) is called the HEAD.

 

So, let’s head for the head of the cork! From the Basilica of St-Urbain to the Cathedral of St-Pierre St-Paul, via the street “rue Gambey” or “The Heart of Troyes”, wander the streets of the district and discover the most beautiful places while learning all sorts of surprising things!

Step 01 / 13

See the route on a map
Go to the Troyes town hall.
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01 /13

Take à closer look at the door

What are the names of the sculpted heads on both sides of the wooden door of the Town Hall?

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Step 02 / 13

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Now, go to the street “rue Urbain IV”.
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02 /13

At number 44, you will see a beautiful door surmounted by a mascaron...

Which god of Greek mythology is represented?

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Step 03 / 13

See the route on a map
Go to St-Urbain basilica
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03 /13

On the north side of the basilica, on the street “rue Clemenceau” side (on the left as you face the entrance), the first gargoyle you see represents a wolf.

What does the 7th gargoyle represent?

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Did you know ?

Jacques Pantaléon, the son of a cobbler from Troy, who was elected Pope in 1261 under the name of Urban IV, had a collegiate church built on the site of his father’s former cobbler’s shop.

 

A masterpiece of radiant Gothic art with its perfect proportions, lacy stonework and immense stained-glass windows, the Basilica of Saint-Urbain is often compared to La Sainte-Chapelle in Paris.

Work on St Urbain’s basilica was interrupted for several years by the abbess of Notre-Dame-aux-Nonnains abbey, who sent men-at-arms to devastate the site and even beat up the workers! The Pope, outraged, excommunicated the abbess and her accomplices… and the collegiate church was finally finished!

vitrail représentant ST Urbain - basilique st urbain - Troyes

Les travaux de la basilique St Urbain ont été interrompus pendant plusieurs années à cause de l’abbesse de l’abbaye Notre-Dame-aux-Nonnains qui envoya des hommes d’armes pour dévaster le chantier et même rosser les ouvriers ! Le pape excédé excommunia l’abbesse et ses complices… et la collégiale put enfin être terminée !

Step 04 / 13

See the route on a map
Go to rue Gambey
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04 /13

In this small street, typical of medieval streets, you will see a number of paintings by the artist Piero Cavalleri.

Which painting is not in the street?

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Step 05 / 13

See the route on a map
Now go to Saint Remy's church
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05 /13

On the bell tower, look at the beautiful clock with its single hand. Further down on the left, you will notice Roman numerals engraved on lines...

What is it?

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Step 06 / 13

See the route on a map
Visit the "Coeur de Troyes" (“Heart of Troyes”) on the quay “Quai des Comtes de Champagne”.
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06 /13

This heart is the symbol of love... A couple of lovers from the Middle Ages is very famous in Aube.

Which couple is it?

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Step 07 / 13

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Go to the bridge on “rue de la Cité”.
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07 /13

On the bridge pier, notice the original sculpture "Wait for me!" (“Attendez-moi !”) by Belgian artist Tom Frantzen.

What kind of birds are they ?

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Le savais-tu ?

Until the beginning of the 20th century, the bridge you are standing on could turn on a spindle fixed to the spot where the geese are resting, allowing barges to pass on the Haute-Seine canal.

pont tournant

Step 08 / 13

See the route on a map
Now go to l'hôtel Dieu, on rue de la cité
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08 /13

On the beautiful wrought iron gate, you will notice a coat of arms. At the very top, under the cross, is the coat of arms of the French royal crown.

What flowers are represented?

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Step 09 / 13

See the route on a map
Go to the Cathedral
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09 /13

On her way to Reims with the future King Charles VII, Joan of Arc passed through Troyes.

Can you find the date of her visit on the cathedral?

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Step 10 / 13

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Go to the square “place du Préau / quai Lafontaine”
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10 /13

Children and animals form the "Ribambelle joyeuse" (“the merry band”), a bronze sculpture by Belgian artist Tom Frantzen.

How many ducks can you count ?

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Step 11 / 13

See the route on a map
Now, go to the quay “Quai des Comtes de Champagne”.
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11 /13

On the quays, there is a statue of a pretty lady in a hat sitting on a bench.

What is she doing ?

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Step 12 / 13

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Go to the square “Place de la Libération”.
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12 /13

In the square, you will find the statue of Robert Galley, who was mayor of Troyes from 1972 to 1995.

What was this mayor passionate about? (Look closely at the statue!)

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Step 13 / 13

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Go to the square “Place de la Libération”.
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13 /13

On the merry-go-round, take a good look at the magnificent animals, characters and vehicles...

What is the name of the horse ?

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You have finished your tour!

 

If you want to discover the rest of the historic heart of Troyes, we invite you to play the following game “Have fun discovering the cork!” From St-Jean to St-Nicolas…

 

Enjoy the walk!

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