Notre Dame de Paris

Notre Dame de Paris ('Our Lady of Paris' in French) is a Gothic cathedral on the eastern half of the Île de la Cité in the fourth arrondissement of Paris, France, with its main entrance to the west. It is the main Catholic cathedral of the archdiocese of Paris and the seat of the Archbishop of Paris. Notre Dame de Paris is widely considered one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture in the world. It was restored and saved from destruction by Viollet-le-Duc, one of France's most famous architects. The name Notre Dame means "Our Lady" in French.

Notre Dame de Paris was one of the first Gothic cathedrals, and its construction spanned the Gothic period. Its sculptures and stained glass show the heavy influence of naturalism, unlike that of earlier Romanesque architecture.

Notre Dame de Paris was among the first buildings in the world to use the flying buttress [arched exterior supports]. The building was not originally designed to include the flying buttresses around the choir and nave. After the construction began and the thinner walls (popularized in the Gothic style) grew ever higher, stress fractures began to occur as the walls pushed outward. In response, the cathedral's architects built supports around the outside walls, and later additions continued as such.

The cathedral suffered desecration during the radical phase of the French Revolution in the 1790s, when much of its religious imagery was damaged or destroyed. During the 19th century, an extensive restoration project was completed, returning the cathedral to its previous state.

Construction

In 1160, because the church in Paris had become the "parish church of the kings of Europe", Bishop Maurice de Sully deemed the previous Parisian cathedral, St Stephen's (which had been built in the 4th century) unworthy of its lofty role, and had it demolished shortly after he assumed the title of Bishop of Paris. According to legend, de Sully had a vision of a glorious new cathedral for Paris, and sketched it in the dirt outside of the original church. To begin the construction, the bishop had several houses demolished and had a new road built in order to transport materials for the rest of the cathedral. , Portal of the Last Judgment and Portal of St-Anne]] Construction began in 1163, during the reign of Louis VII, and opinion differs as to whether Maurice de Sully or Pope Alexander III laid the foundation stone of the cathedral. However, both were at the ceremony in question. Bishop de Sully went on to devote most of his life and wealth to the cathedral's construction.

Construction of the west front, with its distinctive two towers, began about the year 1200, before the nave had been completed, contrary to normal construction practice. Over the construction period, numerous architects worked on the site, as is evidenced by the differing styles at different heights of the west front and towers. Between 1210 and 1220, the fourth architect oversaw the construction of the level with the rose window and the great halls beneath the towers. The towers were completed around 1245, and the cathedral was completed around 1345.

Timeline of construction

  • 1160 Maurice de Sully (named Bishop of Paris), orders the original cathedral to be demolished.
  • 1163 Cornerstone laid for Notre Dame de Paris — construction begins.
  • 1182 Apse and choir completed.
  • 1196 Nave completed. Bishop de Sully dies.
  • 1200 Work begins on western façade.
  • 1225 Western façade completed.
  • 1250 Western towers and north rose window completed.
  • 1260s Transepts changed to the Gothic style by Jean de Chelles then Peter of Montereau
  • 1250–1345 Remaining elements completed

The organ

Though several organs were installed in the cathedral over time, the earliest ones were inadequate for the building. The first noteworthy organ was finished in the 1700s by the noted builder François-Henri Clicquot. Some of Clicquot's original pipework in the pedal division continues to sound from the organ today. The organ was almost completely rebuilt and expanded in the 19th century by Aristide Cavaillé-Coll.

The position of titular organist at Notre-Dame is considered as one of the most prestigious organist posts in France, along with the post of Saint Sulpice in Paris, Cavaillé-Coll's largest instrument.

The organ has 7,800 pipes, with 900 classified as historical. The organ has 109 stops, five 56-key manuals and a 32-key pedalboard. In December 1992, work was completed on the organ that fully computerized the organ under 3 LANs (Local Area Networks).

I Grand Orgue C–g3
Violon-Basse 16′
Bourdon 16′
Montre 8′
Viole de Gambe 8′
Flûte Harmonique 8′
Bourdon 8′
Prestant 4′
Octave 4′
Doublette 2′
Fourniture II–V
Cymbale II–V
Bombarde 16′
Trompette 8′
Trompette (Réc.) 8′
Clairon 4′
Chamade 8
Chamade 4


II Positif C–g3
Montre 16′
Bourdon 16′
Salicional 8′
Flûte Harmonique 8′
Bourdon 8′
Unda Maris (ab c0) 8′
Prestant 4′
Flûte Douce 4′
Nasard 22/3′
Doublette 2′
Tierce 13/5′
Fourniture V
Cymbale V
Clarinette 16′
Cromorne 8′
Clarinette aiguë 4′
III Récit C–g3
Quintaton 16′
Diapason 8′
Viole de gambe 8′
Voix céleste 8
Flûte traversière 8′
Bourdon céleste 8′
Octave 4′
Flûte Octaviante 4′ 35
Quinte 22/3′
Octavin 2′
Bombarde 16′
Trompette 8′
Clairon 4′
Basson-Hautbois 8′
Clarinette 8′
Voix Humaine 8′
Hautbois 8′
Dessus de Cornet V
Dessus de Hautbois 8′
Trompette 8′
Clairon 4′
Régale en chamade 2′/16′
Chamade (G.O.) 8′
Chamade (G.O.) 4′
IV Solo C–g3
Bourdon 32′
Principal 16′
Montre 8′
Flûte Harmonique 8′
Grosse Quinte 51/3′
Prestant 4′
Grosse Tierce 31/5′
Nazard 22/3′
Septième 22/7′
Doublette 2′
Grande Fourniture III
Fourniture V
Cymbale V
Cornet II–V
Cromorne 8′
Trompette (G.O.) 8′
Clairon (G.O.) 4′


V Grand Chœur C–g3
Principal 8′
Bourdon 8′
Prestant 4′
Nazard 22/3′
Doublette 2′
Tierce 13/5′
Larigot 11/3′
Septième 11/7′
Piccolo 1′
Plein jeu IV
Tuba Magna 16′
Trompette 8′
Clairon 4′
Pédale C–f1
Principal Basse 32′
Contrebasse 16′
Soubbasse 16′
Quinte 102/3′
Violoncelle 8′
Flûte 8′
Bourdon 8′
Grosse Tierce 62/5′
Quinte 51/3′
Septième 44/7′
Octave 4′
Flûte 4′
Tierce 31/5′
Nazard 22/3′
Flûte 2′
Tierce 13/5′
Larigot 11/3′
Piccolo 1′
Fourniture III
Cymbale IV
Bombarde 32′
Bombarde 16′
Basson 16′
Sordun 16′
Trompette 8′
Basson 8′
Clairon 4′
Chalumeau 4′
Clairon 2′

Among the best-known organists at Notre Dame was Louis Vierne, who held this position from 1900 to 1937. Under his tenure, the Cavaillé-Coll organ was modified in its tonal character, notably in 1902 and 1932. Pierre Cochereau initiated further alterations (many of which were already planned by Louis Vierne), including the electrification of the action between 1959 and 1963 (the original Cavaillé-Coll console, which is now located in the south tower entrance to the tribune), was replaced by a new console in Anglo-American style) and the addition of further stops between 1965 and 1972, notably in the pedal division, the recomposition of the mixture stops, and finally the adding of three horizontal reed stops "en chamade".

After Cochereau's sudden death in 1984, four new titular organists were appointed at Notre Dame in 1985: Jean-Pierre Leguay, Olivier Latry, Yves Devernay (who died in 1990), and Philippe Lefebvre. This was reminiscent of the 18th-century practice of the cathedral having four titular organists, each one playing for three months of the year. Beginning in 1989, another restoration to the instrument was undertaken, which was completed in 1992.

Alterations, vandalism and restorations

In 1548, rioting Huguenots damaged features of the cathedral, considering them idolatrous. During the reigns of Louis XIV and Louis XV, the cathedral underwent major alterations as part of an ongoing attempt to modernize cathedrals throughout Europe. Tombs and stained glass windows were destroyed. The north and south rose windows were spared this fate, however.

In 1793, during the French Revolution, the cathedral was rededicated to the Cult of Reason, and then to the Cult of the Supreme Being. During this time, many of the treasures of the cathedral were either destroyed or plundered. The statues of biblical kings of Judah (erroneously thought to be kings of France) were beheaded. Many of the heads were found during a 1977 excavation nearby and are on display at the Musée de Cluny. For a time, Lady Liberty replaced the Virgin Mary on several altars. The cathedral's great bells managed to avoid being melted down. The cathedral also came to be used as a warehouse for the storage of food.

A restoration program was initiated in 1845, overseen by architects Jean-Baptiste-Antoine Lassus and Eugène Viollet-le-Duc. The restoration lasted 25 years and included the construction of a flèche (a type of spire) as well as the addition of the chimeras on the Galerie des Chimères. Viollet le Duc always signed his work with a bat, the wing structure of which most resembles the Gothic vault (see Roquetaillade castle).

In 1871, during the period of the Paris Commune, the cathedral was nearly set alight: some records suggest that the rebels even went so far as to set fire to a mound of chairs within the building. Whether that was so or not, the cathedral survived the Commune period essentially unscathed.

In 1939, during World War II, it was feared that German bombers could destroy the windows; as a result, on September 11 1939, they were removed. They were restored at the end of the war.

In 1991, a major program of maintenance and restoration was initiated, which was intended to last 10 years but is still in progress as of 2009, the cleaning and restoration of old sculptures being an exceedingly delicate matter.

The bells

There are five bells at Notre Dame. The great bourdon bell, Emmanuel, is located in the South Tower, weighs just over 13 tons, and is tolled to mark the hours of the day and for various occasions and services. There are four additional bells on wheels in the North Tower, which are swing chimed. These bells are rung for various services and festivals. The bells were once rung manually, but are currently rung by electric motors. The bells also have external hammers for tune playing from a small clavier.

Significant events

Шаблон:RC Mariology

  • 1185 — Heraclius of Caesarea calls for the Third Crusade from the still-incomplete cathedral.
  • 1239 — The Crown of Thorns is placed in the cathedral by St. Louis during the construction of Sainte-Chapelle.
  • 1302 — Philip the Fair opens the first States-General.
  • December 16 1431 — Henry VI of England is crowned King of France.
  • 1450 — Wolves of Paris trapped and are killed on the steps of the Cathedral.
  • November 7 1455 — Isabelle Romée, the mother of Joan of Arc, petitions a papal delegation to overturn her daughter's conviction for heresy.
  • April 24 1558 — Mary I of Scotland is married to the Dauphin François (later François II of France), son of Henry II of France.
  • August 18 1572 — Henry of Navarre (later Henry IV of France) marries Marguerite de Valois.
  • September 10 1573 — Henri de Valois took an oath in Notre Dame Cathedral to respect traditional liberties and the law on religious freedom that had been passed during the interregnum in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. He agreed to two documents, the Henrician articles and the pacta conventa (sworn articles). In them, the king recognized the principle of free election and abandoned all succession claims.
  • December 2 1804 — the coronation ceremony of Napoléon I and his wife Joséphine, with Pope Pius VII officiating.
  • 1909 — Joan of Arc is beatified.
  • May 16 1920 — Joan of Arc is canonized.
  • 1900 — Louis Vierne is appointed Organist of Notre-Dame de Paris after a heavy competition (with judges including Charles-Marie Widor) against the 500 most talented organ players of the era. On June 2 1937 he dies at the cathedral organ (as was his life-long wish) as he is nearing the end of his final concert held at Notre Dame.
  • August 26 1944 — The Te Deum Mass takes place in the cathedral to celebrate the liberation of Paris. (According to some accounts the Mass was interrupted by sniper fire from both the internal and external galleries.)
  • November 12 1970 — The Requiem Mass of General Charles de Gaulle is held.
  • June 6 1971 - Philippe Petit surreptitiously strings a wire between the two towers of Notre Dame and tight-rope walks across it. Petit would later perform similar act between the twin towers of the World Trade Center.
  • May 31 1980 — After the Magnificat of this day, Pope John Paul II celebrates Mass on the parvis in front of the cathedral.
  • January 1996—The Requiem Mass of François Mitterrand is held.
  • August 10 2007 — The Requiem Mass of Jean-Marie Cardinal Lustiger, archbishop emeritus of Paris, is held.

The cathedral is renowned for its Lent sermons founded by the famous Dominican Jean-Baptiste Henri Lacordaire in the 1840s. In recent years, however, an increasing number have been given by leading public figures and state-employed academics. Many of their audience, however, are foreigners, and as such obliged to a devoir de réserve.

Other

  • Under the 1905 French law on the separation of Church and State, Notre Dame remains state property, like all cathedrals built by the Kingdom of France, but exclusive use is granted to the Roman Catholic Church, freeing it of maintenance cost in proper operation and all repairs.
  • France's "Point zéro", the reference point for distances along the highways starting in Paris, is situated in the square in front of the cathedral.
  • During the early 19th century, the cathedral was in a state of disrepair, and city planners began to contemplate tearing it down. French novelist Victor Hugo, an admirer of the cathedral, wrote his novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame (originally titled Notre Dame de Paris) in part to raise awareness of the cathedral's heritage, which sparked renewed interest in the cathedral's fate. A campaign to collect funds to save the cathedral followed, culminating in the 1845 restorations.
  • Atop the main cathedral sit 13 tarnished statues. Twelve of them face outwards and are of the Twelve Apostles, while the remaining statue is of the architect himself, and is facing inwards, his arms extended.
  • Another very important fact about this was that it was never finished.

See also

Шаблон:Commons

  • Maîtrise Notre Dame de Paris
  • Musée de Notre Dame de Paris
  • List of tallest structures in Paris

References

External links

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Lufthansa
1 August 2014
Of all famous Parisian landmarks, the Notre Dame Cathedral is the oldest. After a long construction period, this Gothic masterpiece was completed in 1345. But it is still as popular as ever!
All-Paris-Apartments.com
23 October 2012
The view from the top of Notre Dame is breathtaking, and definitely worth the 402 steps it takes to get there (no elevators)! Make sure to check out the gargoyles and make the most of the free entry!
Artyom Fedosov
27 July 2016
Long long queues, but worth waiting. Free entrance, both exterior and interior are superb. Must see in Paris.
shabnam sina
5 January 2017
such a nice view to river and has a great classic architecture , when you walk into the church you can feel another sence of being in space .
Carlos Rangel
10 January 2022
One of the most magnificent and beautiful cathedrals of the modern era, do not forget to visit it’s interiors and climb the narrow staircase to the bell tower and admire Paris along with the gargoyles
Barb K
25 March 2019
a different visit to the “cloches” “bells of Notre Dame. you have to climb around 300 stairs to reach them. it really worth it!! the view is unique
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