What to do in summer > Sports and leisure > Natural world > The Educational Trails > Heritage Trails > Historical Path in Zinal > Post 6. Chapel of Saint-Barthélémy

Post 6. Chapel of Saint-Barthélémy

The chapel, called “English” because of its neo-Gothic English style, was inaugurated in 1900. It is dedicated to Saint-Barthélemy, patron saint of Zinal, invoked to protect the village and its inhabitants from fires and natural disasters.

  Map of Zinal

It replaced a chapel nearby oriented in a different direction, thought to have existed as from 1515. “Near the hotel, beyond a gently sloping lawn, near the road, stands a chapel, a small white chapel ; the facade was plastered over many years ago, but it has maintained a virginal whiteness ; only under the stress of time, its small bell tower is falling apart, the cross bends over, and soon will fall.“ (Emile Javelle, 1872)

The new chapel, a real small church, was built when the tourist attraction of Zinal was developed.

On the façade, there is a plaque commemorating its inauguration, while a second honours the memory of Joachim Tabin, who died in 1899 on the Zinalrothorn.

Inside, the large mural that represents the Last Judgment was created by Alfredo Cini in 1948. He also painted the fourteen Stations of the Cross dating from 1952.

The original altar with its Gothic altarpiece figure remains in the choir. Above the tabernacle, there is a painting of the apostle Barthélemy holding the knife with which he is meant to have been skinned alive, in his right hand.

The stained glass windows are the work of the Anniviers artist Roger Theytaz. Those of the choir date from 1984 and the ones representing Sainte-Anne and Saint-Théodule, from 1986. The stained glass windows representing Saint-Jean-Baptiste and Sainte-Euphémie were created in 2014, thanks to a gift of Maria Theresa Theytaz, called “Chouquette” (1932-2011). The windows represent the patron saints of the four old towns of Ayer, Vissoie, Grimentz and Saint-Jean, which are the home towns of the members of the “Société de Zinal“.

At the exit of the chapel, note the wall where thirty Zinal guides would meet in 1930, waiting for clients from the Diablons and Durand Hotels.


Next post

Return to the Hotel du Besso. The next location on the tour is the house in the left curve.