In Cahors, 14th century frescoes in a renovated building

the essential
A building located on rue Fondue-Haute has been renovated and will be rented out. Its peculiarity? Frescoes dating back to the 14th century have been discovered adorning its walls.

Lately, the regulars of rue Fondue-Haute in Cahors may have noticed some changes. To do this, you have to go up the street a little further, to number 121. There is a building here, which was abandoned until Christophe Lion decided to buy this property. The target ? Initially it is enough to make three apartments.

Only when the work begins do the first surprises arrive. Anaïs Charrier, construction archaeologist in charge of the project, confirms: “From the outset, we identify traces of decoration in the attic”. Going down one floor, there is another apartment. Here there are fourteenth-century frescoes on all the walls of the main hall. “We didn’t expect to find so many” confirms Christophe Lion. On the walls of the room there is a Christ on the cross, more than four feet tall, or many squares with, drawn inside… lions of course.

Frescoes adorn the walls of the apartment.
DDM – Corentin Maugue

The building is therefore classified as a Notable Heritage Site. Then an important job begins. “If we take the example of Christ, the time spent on field samples, computer analysis, etc., we had it for 20 hours” develops Anaïs Charrier. And then, a dendrochronology is done. Let’s skip the technical explanations of this barbaric term. What must be remembered is that this is a dating method used in archeology. The conclusion is that the building dates back to 1326.

500 medieval houses in Cahors

But how to make it a pleasant apartment to live in? He and his teams succeeded. In addition to offering an inimitable view over the city of Cahors, the apartment is decorated in such a way that the modernity of the equipment combines with the historic age of the frescoes on the walls.

A breathtaking view of the city of Cahors.

A breathtaking view of the city of Cahors.
DDM – Corentin Maugue

In the end, four apartments were renovated and will be rented out. It will be social housing with a limited rent for tenants whose resources do not exceed a certain ceiling. Accommodations range from studios up to 88m2 and will cost between 456 and 567 euros per month.

“It is an exceptional discovery of the heritage” confirms Jean-Luc Marx, first deputy mayor of Cahors. This style of renovation is part of the city’s desire to “empty the stock of vacant housing.” And, to come across nugget lodgings like this one. Because, of medieval houses in Cahors, there are almost 500. Enough to motivate Christophe Lion: “It’s a renovation but we still have more in the pipeline. We won’t stop there!”

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