Saint-Léonard-le-Noblat, Monastery of
SAINT-LÉONARD-LE-NOBLAT, MONASTERY OF
An abbey founded near Limoges, France, in the forest of Pauvain, by St. leonard of Noblat in the 6th century. Its origins are legendary, going back possibly to the days of King clovis or his immediate successors, who granted Leonard a piece of land in gratitude for his intercession. The house later developed into a collegiate church in the commune of Saint-Léonard-le-Noblat. The lower parts of the structure, the nave, apsidal chapels, and the base of the tower are in Romanesque style, dating from the 11th century. The west portal is of the 13th century. The interior décor includes carved choir stalls from the 15th century and an alabaster bas-relief in the chapel of St. Joseph, which possibly antedates that period. The church became famous as a pilgrimage spot honoring the saint whose name it bears.
Bibliography: l. h. cottineau, Répertoire topobibliographique des abbayes et prieurés, 2 v. (Mâcon 1935–39) 2:2764–65. l. rÉau, Iconographie de l'art chrétien, 6 v. (Paris 1955–59) 3.2:799–802. Acta Sanctorum Nov. 3:139–209. a. m. zimmermann, Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche, ed. j. hofer and k. rahner, 10 v. (2d, new ed. Freiburg 1957–65) 6:965–966.
[o. j. blum]