Objet d'art in the Louvre Museum, www.paris-pages.com

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Suger eagle

The Egyptian porphyry jar on the left was transformed into the shape of an eagle around 1140 by craftsmen for Abbot Suger of the cathedral of St. Denis. The metal is gilded silver. Abbot Suger devoted his life to to making St. Denis the home of beautiful treasures.

He was of humble origin, but rose up through the ranks of the church to become abbot of St. Denis (the church where all French monarchs were traditionally crowned), and regent of France for seven years. He had a gold cross over seven metres tall which was studded with precious stones, and was a collector of ancient documents. He must have made St. Denis into the Louvre of its time. Unfortunately most was either destroyed or lost during the revolution. This jar is one of the few pieces that survived. It is 43 cm tall.

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