The apothecary of the Saint-Roch hospice

The Hospice Saint-Roch

It occupies the site of the old Hôtel-Dieu, founded in the twelfth century, the oldest Hôtel-Dieu in Berry.
In the fifteenth century, with the ravages of the plague, it is built a sickhouse, overlooking the chapel. From the seventeenth century onwards, with the arrival of hospital sisters and a surgeon, a real hospital service was established.
The building includes a contemporary extension to accommodate temporary exhibitions. It is a bridge between the past and its riches, and the present, with contemporary art.


The museum

This museum is unlike any other, if only for the diversity of what it exhibits.
Among its collections, one will remain admiring and contemplative in front of the shelves of the apothecary, on which are carefully arranged 379 jars of powders and other medical materials of the time. The whole is one of the three most beautiful collections in France, with Troyes and Baugé. You will also see 31 silenes, a silene being a painted wooden apothecary's box used to preserve medicinal drugs. Come closer to observe the illuminations on these boxes, dragons, mythological creatures, plants...
And you will also imagine seeing the sisters working in their reconstructed laboratory.

Another unique piece is in the chapel: the tree of Jesse, an incredible sculpture that translates the words of the Gospel of Matthew indicating that from the root of Jesse will come a stem with a flower at the top. And, indeed, at the top of a mystical genealogy, the sculpture shows Mary, in this open flower, holding Jesus in her arms.

You will also take a short trip to the Oceanic collection, a collection of 1000 objects brought back from Papua and New Guinea by a congregation of missionaries.

... And don't forget to admire the oldest harpsichord in France, signed and dated 1648! Simply a marvel, perfectly preserved with its painted decorations.

In short, a very unusual visit of a very eclectic museum...

Ah, when you leave, go and stroll around the 5000 m² of the sculpture park, where about thirty works signed by the greatest names are available to you...



Museum of the Hospice Saint-Roch
Rue de l'Hospice Saint-Roch
36105 Issoudun
Tel : 02 54 21 01 76


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Issoudun Broché

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Pour redécouvrir le passé et les métamorphoses urbaines dans Issoudun, Bernard Gagnepain a photographié les différents quartiers de la ville et les faubourgs, mais il ne l'a pas fait au hasard : il revient sur les pas de ceux qui l'ont précédé. L'auteur met en perspective des cartes postales anciennes avec des clichés pris, dans la mesure du possible, sous le même angle. Au fil des pages, le lecteur retrouve des endroits familiers qui ont bien changé. Il sera surpris de revoir la vieille poste, construite en 1903 à l'emplacement de l'actuelle, de retrouver l'ancien palais de justice, qui fut démoli en 1981 pour bâtir la résidence Agnès Sorel, ou de revisiter l'ancien colombier qui a laissé place en 1938 à une esplanade. Avec un peu plus de 160 images rigoureusement choisies, Bernard Gagnepain invite le lecteur à une surprenante aventure, un pied dans le passé, grâce aux documents anciens, mais aussi dans le présent, avec des clichés qui soulignent bien des bouleversements.

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