Protector of the city and its inhabitants, the Black Madonna of Romigier has always been venerated by the Manosquins. Legend has it that she emerged from the earth in the 10th century, discovered by a ploughman whose oxen stopped in front of a bramble bush. While digging the earth, a magnificent ancient sarcophagus, also visible in the church of Notre-Dame de Romigier where it serves as an altar, was exhumed with, inside, the intact statue. Still according to tradition, this statue would have been hidden there to protect it from Saracen invasions...
As it was discovered under a bramble bush, "roumi", in Provencal, it was nicknamed Our Lady of Romigier, a name that was also given to the church where it is exposed. This Black Madonna was particularly invoked to protect women in childbirth, to give life to stillborn children and against fatal falls.
Originally this wooden sculpture was not "black" but painted, since a recent restoration has revealed traces of polychromy, blue, but also red, pink...
In the 19th century, this statue was covered with luxurious clothes and fabrics, as attested by the numerous ex-votos that represent it.
Specialists date it to the 10th century. It is one of the oldest Romanesque virgins in France.
The crown of the Virgin and that of the child Jesus are Merovingian crowns.
It is classified as a historical monument since 1909.
Church of Notre-Dame de Romigier
Place de l'Hôtel de ville,
Tel : 04 92 72 10 43
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