01 May - 25 September
Mon 10.30 - 12.30 • 13.30 - 18.30
Tue 10.30 - 12.30 • 13.30 - 18.30
Wed 10.30 - 12.30 • 13.30 - 18.30
Thu 10.30 - 12.30 • 13.30 - 18.30
Fri 10.30 - 12.30 • 13.30 - 18.30
Sat 10.30 - 12.30 • 13.30 - 18.30
Sun 10.30 - 12.30 • 13.30 - 18.30
25 September - 03 November
Fri • 14.00 - 17.00
Sat • 14.00 - 17.00
Sun • 14.00 - 17.00
In 1544, René de Chalon, Prince of Orange, favourite of Charles V and son-in-law of Duke Antoine, died at the age of 26, mortally wounded in the battle of Saint-Dizier. In order to preserve its heart and bowels, a custom attested by princes and kings since the 13th century, an exceptional funeral monument was carved. Commonly called Skeleton or Transi, it testifies to the persistence of the theme of death, the interest in anatomy during the Renaissance and especially the unparalleled talent of its author, Ligier Richier.
This artist from Saint-Mihiel is, without a doubt, one of the greatest artists of the French Renaissance. He worked for the Dukes of Bar and Lorraine before converting to Protestantism and settling in Geneva, where he died in 1567.
Originally, the work was located in the chapel of the Dukes of the Collegiate Church of St. Maximus, near the castle. During the Revolution, it was moved to the church of Saint-Etienne and thus survived the total destruction of Saint-Maxe. At its feet are now preserved the remains of the Dukes of Bar. They are covered with a large slab of black marble, the last remnant of the tomb of the Count of Bar Henry IV and his wife Yolande de Flandre.
This work, made of 16th century polychrome wood, is attributed to Ligier Richier. It testifies to the artist's ability to translate feelings: note the contrast between Christ's gentle attitude, whose slender body is still in the 15th century tradition, that of the resigned Good Larron - on the left - and the tormented expression of the Bad Larron - on the right.
The north aisle of the church houses a painting depicting the Crucifixion behind which one can see, not a view of Jerusalem, but of Bar-le-Duc! As such, it is a precious testimony to the aspect of the city before the destruction of the castle by Louis XIV's troops.
Separated from the nave by a double-registered, Gothic (upper part) and Renaissance (lower part) carved stone fence, this funeral chapel housed the graves of the Stainville family. The three lovers still bear witness to this original vocation.
The chapel also houses two beautiful statues (St. Roch and St. Adrian, in stone, dated from the late 15th or early 16th century) which seem to be by the same artist, often identified as Jean Crocq, a sculptor from Flanders working in Bar-le-Duc.
The presence of organs is attested in the church since the 17th century. In 1770, Nicolas Dupont made an instrument, destroyed 23 years later. The current instrument is the work of Jean François Vautrin and Antoine François Brice Didelot in 1828. It is based on elements from the 18th century and was partially modified at the end of the 19th century (1892).
According to tradition, the Virgin and Child (dated 14th century) from the former Porte-aux-Bois, commonly known as Notre-Dame du Guet, prevented the city from being taken by enemy troops in the 15th century. Several times damaged and restored, this beautiful stone statue, which since the 19th century has been housed in the Saint-Etienne church, has a typical 14th century arch and set of apron folds.