Architect in the guise of Thomas-the-Apostle.
If our Alchemist was pulling his beard,
it would be because he and the grotesques surrounding him
on the tower baulstrades of Notre-Dame, Paris,
were not actually mediaeval statuary at all,
but nineteenth-century restorations.
Charged with the task of renovation, in eighteen-hundred-and-forty-four,
Eugene Viollet-le-Duc, found only the stumps
of claws and talons on the tower corners
but with the help of a body of stonemasons
he set about re-envisioning the cathedral’s mediaeval past…
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