Saint-Savin-sur-Gartempe, Abbey of
SAINT-SAVIN-SUR-GARTEMPE, ABBEY OF
Former Benedictine monastery, department of Vienne, France, Diocese of Poitiers (Latin, S. Savinus ad Wartimpam ). Founded c. 800 by the count abbot Badilon of Marmoutier, it was named for the 5th-century martyr St. Savinus, originally interred nearby. His relics were transferred to the abbey when it was enlarged by Louis the Pious, who reputedly entrusted it to benedict of aniane. It was a center of monastic reform from the 9th through the 11th centuries, and its religious reestablished regular observance of the benedictine rule in other houses. From here, Hugh of Anzy (d. c. 930) became the reforming abbot of Saint-Martin-d'Autun, and Gombaud reformed Charroux (1023). Prosperity declined during the Hundred Years' War. Pillaged repeatedly during the wars of religion (1562–85), it fell into decay under simoniacal abbots. maurists were introduced in 1642–43; it was suppressed during the French Revolution. The 11th-century abbey church, renowned for its Romanesque frescoes (11th–12th centuries) of the Apocalypse, Redemption, and Genesis, serves as parish church; the monastic buildings house municipal offices.
Bibliography: É. maillard, L'Église de Saint-Savin sur Gartempe (Paris 1926). i. yosnikawa, L'Apocalypse de Saint Savin (Paris 1939). l. h. cottineau, Répertoire topobibliographique des abbayes et prieurés, 2 v. (Mâcon 1935–39) 2:2881.
[g. e. gingras]