Statues - Hither & Thither

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Place de la Cathédrale
(Cathédrale de Lausanne)

Grand Portail de la cathédrale

Grand Portal of the Cathedral

Raphaël Lugeon

Lausanne /  Grand Portail de la cathédrale


The west or Grand Portail of the cathedral of Lausanne was built by bishops Aymon de Montfalcon and his nephew Sébastien de Montfalcon in the ealry 16th century. It was not finished, several statues were lacking. The accolade shows the coats-of-arms of Sébastien de Montfalcon. In the late 19th century the portal was in-such a state of disrepair that the sculptor Raphael Lugeon was charges for the demolition and reconstruction of the complete portail (1892-1909). The only architectural changes Lugeon made were a trumeau that did not previously exist (and was left empty because nobody dared to place there the usual statue of the Virgin and Child) and a smaller lintel of two blocks instead of one. In addition, he created the statues Sébastien de Montfalcon had not had time to make: those of the jambs, the angels musicians and St. John the Baptist in the gallery of the Garden of monks. The trumeau was left empty. Lugeon published in 1941 a booklet Le portail occidental de la cathédrale de Lausanne.

We only photographed the 14 large statues: The eight statues in the jambs, made by Lugeon, represent those who proclaimed Christ or spoke of the Holy Virgin. The models for these statues were mostly Lugeon's contempories who were involved in the cathedral (nos. 3-8 were described in the Gazette de Lausanne of 19 Oct. 1904 after the plaster maquettes.

(click on the photo for an enlargement in a separate window.)
Grand Portail de la cathédrale
Grand Portail de la cathédrale
Grand Portail de la cathédrale
Grand Portail de la cathédrale
Grand Portail de la cathédrale
Grand Portail de la cathédrale
Grand Portail de la cathédrale
Grand Portail de la cathédrale
  1. Malachie / Malachi, prophet, writer of the Book of Malachi, (Wikipedia)
    model unknown.
  2. Zacharie / Zechariah, prophet (Wikipedia)
    model unknown.
  3. Moïse / Moses, Biblical figure, religious leader, lawgiver, and prophet, to whom the authorship of the Torah is traditionally attributed (Wikipedia)
    traditional, not sculpted after a model.
  4. Daniel, Biblical figure (Wikipedia)
    model Jules Simon, state's architect
  5. Jérémie / Jeremiah, prophet (Wikipedia)
    model Eugène Violet le Duc, French architect.
  6. David, Biblical figure (Wikipedia)
    model Ernest Burnat, architect of Vevey.
  7. Esaïe / Isaiah, prophet (Wikipedia)
    model David Lugeon, father of the sculptor.
  8. Ezéchiel / Ezekiel, prophet (Wikipedia)
    model Jean-Louis Blanc, sculptor.

Below the gallery of the garden of the monks and the top of the bay, six niches were created in which were placed statues of the patron saints of the medieval guilds.

Grand Portail de la cathédrale
  1. ?
  2. Saint Jean-Baptiste / Saint John the Baptist
  3. ?
  4. Sainte Cecile
  5. ?
  6. ?


Sources & Information


  • Burnat, Ernest
  • Daniel
  • David (king)
  • Ezekiel
  • Isaiah
  • Lugeon, David
  • Lugeon, Raphaël
  • Malachi
  • Moses
  • Portal
  • Sculptor
  • Simon, Jules
  • Violet le Duc, Eugène
  • Zechariah
  • Locatie (N 46°31'21" - E 6°38'4") (Satellite view: Google Maps)

    Item Code: chvd027; Photograph: 2 June 2013
    Of each statue we made photos from various angles and also detail photos of the various texts.
    If you want to use photos, please contact us via the contact form (in Dutch, English or German).
    © Website and photos: René & Peter van der Krogt

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