Paris

 

ParisToday it is a block of flats in Paris, 28 rue des Tanneries, Paris XIII, nearest Métro station Glacière. But in the 17th century this was the Monastery of Our Lady of Good Hope, home to the English Benedictine nuns now at St. Mary's Abbey, Colwich.The arches are the former cloister, begun in 1693 under Reverend Mother Agnes Temple. Above were dormitory cells (rooms of the nuns). The manuscript History of the House, completed in 1695, says:

 

12 Cells are complete, and the arches of 14 more are laid.

 

 

 

 

The nuns had bought the house on the outskirts of Paris in 1664, then the one next door in 1686, and built onto it. The district was known as Le Champ de l'Alouette, the Lark's Field. The History adds of Mother Agnes Temple:
Besides the building of the dorter and arches before mentioned, she built the walls round the enclosure and others in the garden, also a strong wall at the end of the house, from the bottom to the top.

 

From February 1652, for 13 years, the community had lived in a succession of rented houses in the area of Paris now known as the Left Bank. One house was too close to the River Seine and was flooded soon after the community moved out!
When they acquired their own home in 1664, the secluded house with the walled garden in the Champ de l'Alouette, it was ideal for a life of prayer. The community remained undisturbed for 125 years.