Notre-Dame Cathedral: A Short History
Notre-Dame Cathedral, where a big fire took place on Monday night, is one of the most famous landmarks in Paris, which attracts around 13 million visitors a year.
The cathedral, whose name means the Virgin Mary, is the seat of the archbishop of Paris.
When was Notre-Dame built?
The cathedral was built on a small island called Île de la Cité, in the middle of the Seine. Construction began in 1163, during the reign of King Louis VII, and was completed in 1345. It is considered a medieval Gothic architectural gem.
It was damaged and neglected in the 1790s, during the French Revolution. The novel Victor Hugo in 1831, “Notre-Dame de Paris,” was published in English as “The Hunchback of Notre Dame,” informing the reader about the condition of the old building.
The book helped spur major repairs from 1844 to 1864, when architects Jean-Baptiste-Antoine Lassus and Eugene-Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc tidied the spire and supported the support.
What historic events happened there?
Henry VI of England was appointed king of France in Notre-Dame in 1431.
Napoleon Bonaparte, who also tried to save the multi-storey cathedral, was crowned emperor there in 1804.
In 1909, Joan of Arc, who had helped France fight against Britain and was burned in the previous century, was beatified at the cathedral by Pope Pius X.
What happens when a fire occurs?
The cathedral, where Mass is still offered on Sunday, is currently undergoing major renovations. In 2017, The New York Times wrote that the cathedral was in desperate need of repair. Weather and time have affected this building. The damaged gargoyle is replaced by plastic, limestone is destroyed when touched.
The renovation is estimated to cost nearly $ 180 million.