The “Collégiale Saint-Salvi”
Dedicated to Saint Salvi, first Bishop of Albi from 574 to 584, the “Collégiale” associates elements of Romanesque (10th century) and Gothic (13th century) architecture, marked by the use of stone in the Romanesque elements and brick in the Gothic.
The “Collégiale” is a collegiate church, a church where the daily office of worship is maintained by a college of canons; a non-monastic, or "secular" community of clergy, organised as a self-governing corporate body.
Saint-Salvi presents a composite architecture associating Romanesque and Gothic styles and is one of the largest Romanesque churches in and around Albi. It was converted into a fodder store after the French Revolution but was given back to the Church at the beginning of the 19th century.
Mounted by an impressive bell and watch tower, Saint-Salvi is one of the oldest buildings in Albi. All that remains today of the cloister, built in 1270 and destroyed during the French Revolution, is the southern gallery. The church includes elements of the Romanesque (for example the semi-circular arches) and Gothic (the capitals and the decoration of the pillars).
Upon entering the church, the visitor is struck by its luminosity. The beautiful alignment of the columns opens up an infinite perspective, concentrating one’s thought upon the essential.