Wednesday
October 1, 2014

Homework Help: French History

Posted by jenny on Sunday, March 21, 2010 at 2:45pm.

Is this good information about the Notre Dame cathedral?



Notre-Dame's first version was a magnificent church built by Childebert I, the king of the Franks at the time, in 528, and was already the cathedral of the city of Paris in the 10th century. However, in 1160, having become the parish church of the kings of Europe, Bishop Maurice de Sully deemed the building unworthy of its lofty role, and had it demolished.

Construction on the current cathedral began in 1163, during the reign of Louis VII.

Construction of the west front, with its distinctive two towers, began in around 1200 before the nave had been completed. Over the construction period, numerous architects worked on the site, which is why there are different 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 finished around 1245 and the cathedral was finally completed around 1345.

During the reigns of Louis XIV and Louis XV at the end of the 17th century the cathedral underwent major alterations, during which many tombs and stained glass windows were destroyed.

In 1793, the cathedral fell victim to the French Revolution. Many sculptures and treasures were destroyed or plundered; the cathedral was rededicated to the Cult of Reason and later to the Cult of the Supreme Being. Lady Liberty replaced the Virgin Mary on several altars. The cathedral also came to be used as a warehouse for the storage of food.

Napoleon Bonaparte, who had declared the Empire on May 28, 1804, was crowned Emperor at Notre-Dame on December 2, 1804.

A restoration program was initiated in 1845, overseen by architects Jean-Baptiste-Antoine Lassus and Eugene Viollet-le-Duc. The restoration lasted 23 years, and included the construction of a spire.

In 1871, a civil uprising leading to the establishment of the short-lived Paris Commune nearly set fire to the cathedral, and some records suggest that a mount of chairs within the cathedral were set alight. In 1905, the law of separation of Church and State was passed; as all cathedrals, Notre-Dame remains state property, but its use is granted to the Roman Catholic Church.

The Te Deum Mass took place in the cathedral to celebrate the liberation of Paris in August 26, 1944. The Requiem Mass of General Charles de Gaulle took place in the cathedral on November 12, 1970.

In 1991, a major restoration program was undertaken. It was expected to last 10 years but continued well into the 21st century - the cleaning and restoration of the old sculptures was an exceedingly delicate job. But now the scaffolding is down and the result is spectacular: the stone architecture and sculptures gleam in their original honey-toned color instead of industrial black.

Is there anything I should add or delete?

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