It's Friday already and here I have yet another line from one of my Eleanor books to share. Okay, I am lying a bit - it is actually a paragraph. But, you'll have to excuse the stretching of the boundaries for First Line Friday because it is Eleanor and she is too cool to confine to one little line.
"Beneath the dome of the church at Fontevraud - in the twelfth century, one of the largest and most prestigious abbeys for women in France - one sees today four recumbent statues, the remains of old funerary monuments, Three of them are carved from soft limestone: that of Henry Plantagenet, count of Anjou and Maine through his father, duke of Normandy and king of England through his mother; that of his son and successor, Richard Coeur de Lion; and that of Isabella of Angouleme, second wife of John Lackland, Richard's brother, who became king in his turn in 1199. The fourth effigy, of painted wood, represents Eleanor, heiress to the duchy of Aquitaine, wife of Henry and mother of Richard and John; she died at Fontevraud, where she had finally taken the veil, on 31 March 1204."
And just for your viewing pleasure, here is a photo from the abbey and what the effigies look like today. Unfortunately the monuments were disturbed long ago, during the French Revolution. It pains me to no end in knowing that Eleanor's bones were lost or purposely destroyed, as well as those of Henry, Richard, and Isabella. This was a sacred burial place and their graves, and others, were needlessly desecrated. I am at least glad that the effigies survived. Without those, we wouldn't even have an idealized version of Eleanor. That's my girl, holding a book.
(Photo from Wikimedia)
After you leave your first line below, check out what my fellow First Liners have waiting for you this week. If you want to play too, contact Carrie from Reading is my SuperPower.
Bree - Bibliophile Reviews
Rachel - Bookworm Mama
Heather - Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen
Beth - Faithfully Bookish
Katie - Fiction Aficionado
Lauraine - Lauraine's Notes
Andi - Radiant Light
Carrie - Reading is my SuperPower
Robin - Robin's Nest
Sydney - Singing Librarian
Kathleen - Kathleen Denly
Amanda - With a Joyful Noise