In about 1050, talented stone workers at the Abbey in Moissac, who also worked at the church of St. Sernin in Toulouse, began to make bas-relief sculptures into the stones of the capitals and on stone walls and thus an old art form returned. One or more of the subsequent generations of this school occasionally did a few works elsewhere. One of the first, two capitals, are on the east end of the nave above the pilasters at St.-Martin's church in Lyon, made about 1100. These are older than those extensively created at Autun and Vezelay. The capital on the right depicts the original sin and then the banishment. On the left side is the murder of Abel and St. Michael slaying a dragon. On the short side of the block is a picture of Jesus offering Redemption.
This church is the oldest one in Lyon,finished by the end of the 11C, and was visited in 1107 by Pope Pascal II. It has a central stone pyramidal peak with small pyramidons at the upper edges and just below this two bell chambers. The simple facade is enriched by the use of brick lozenges. Immediately below the upper line of lozenges is a row of 15 small sculpted figures. Inside the church are fine very early historiated capitals that should not be missed.
Just to the east of the Basilica St.-Martin in the southern part of the Presqu'ile is a small park containing a statue of a seated gentleman, Andre-Marie Ampere (1775-1836). He is the greatest scientist who has ever been born and grown up in Lyon. His last name is attached to the unit of electrical energy and commonly used. He was a child prodigy.
The nave of St. Martin's is separated from the lateral aisles by heavy round pillars that date from Roman times. At the east end are central and lateral apses with altars. The end of the center is covered by a half-dome with a fresco and over the crossing at the start of the nave is another fresco.
My limited French suggests "almost island" which i guess is about right, the area between the Rhone and Saone rivers in the centre of town.
Many shopping and restaurant opportunities and a good wandering location too, maybe notso on a very wet Sunday afternoon.
Anyway the obligatory few photos!
Built in the 15th century the St-Nizier Church is easily recognisable by its two spires, one covered in tiles and the other in stone. Quite a mix, it has a Gothic north spire, a Renaissance main porch and a 19th century Neo-Gothic south spire.
From 1320 onwards the centre of local political power was established here in a chapel next to Saint-Nizier whose great bell rang every night when the city gates were closed.
The Lyon cathedral and the park are good places for first-timers to go. I had been 11 years before this, and, unless you miss something the first time, you won't need to see it again. On the other hand, the old part of Lyon- the shops and narrow streets- is good to see the second time. For shopping, you can't beat Lyon Part-Dieu and the suburb of Venissieux.
RUE DE LA REPUBLIQUE It's a nice promenade that has shops like Gallerie Lafayette, FNAC - music store, restaurants, cinema even McDonalds (at least you can buy beer here)
visit the old chuches and s'pecially the catedrale St Jean, Ainai, Saint Nizier, Beaux arts museum place des terraux,the food market on quai Saint Antoine everyday in the AM but monday.
The mixure of a Roman city on one side of the river with all the boutiques,bars,restaurants, librairies and the more modern part on the presqu'isle, with the modern stores.