Notre Dame de Paris
Overview
 

Notre Dame de Paris (nɔtʁ dam də paʁi; French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 for Our Lady of Paris), also known as Notre Dame Cathedral, is a Gothic
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

, Roman Catholic cathedral
Cathedral
A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

 on the eastern half of the Île de la Cité
Île de la Cité
The Île de la Cité is one of two remaining natural islands in the Seine within the city of Paris . It is the centre of Paris and the location where the medieval city was refounded....

 in the fourth arrondissement of Paris
Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

, France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

. It is the cathedral
Cathedral
A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

 of the Catholic Archdiocese of Paris: that is, it is the church that contains the cathedra
Cathedra
A cathedra or bishop's throne is the chair or throne of a bishop. It is a symbol of the bishop's teaching authority in the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church, and has in some sense remained such in the Anglican Communion and in Lutheran churches...

(official chair) of the Archbishop of Paris
Archbishop of Paris
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Paris is one of twenty-three archdioceses of the Roman Catholic Church in France. The original diocese is traditionally thought to have been created in the 3rd century by St. Denis and corresponded with the Civitas Parisiorum; it was elevated to an archdiocese on...

, currently André Vingt-Trois
André Vingt-Trois
André Armand Vingt-Trois is a French cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He currently serves as Archbishop of Paris, having previously served as Archbishop of Tours from 1999 to 2005. He was elevated to the cardinalate in 2007....

. The cathedral treasury houses a reliquary with the purported Crown of Thorns
Crown of Thorns
In Christianity, the Crown of Thorns, one of the instruments of the Passion, was woven of thorn branches and placed on Jesus Christ before his crucifixion...

.

Notre Dame de Paris is widely considered one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture
French Gothic architecture
French Gothic architecture is a style of architecture prevalent in France from 1140 until about 1500.-Sequence of Gothic styles: France:The designations of styles in French Gothic architecture are as follows:* Early Gothic* High Gothic...

 in France and in Europe, and the naturalism
Naturalism (art)
Naturalism in art refers to the depiction of realistic objects in a natural setting. The Realism movement of the 19th century advocated naturalism in reaction to the stylized and idealized depictions of subjects in Romanticism, but many painters have adopted a similar approach over the centuries...

 of its sculptures and stained glass
Stained glass
The term stained glass can refer to coloured glass as a material or to works produced from it. Throughout its thousand-year history, the term has been applied almost exclusively to the windows of churches and other significant buildings...

 are in contrast with earlier Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture is an architectural style of Medieval Europe characterised by semi-circular arches. There is no consensus for the beginning date of the Romanesque architecture, with proposals ranging from the 6th to the 10th century. It developed in the 12th century into the Gothic style,...

.
Encyclopedia

Notre Dame de Paris (nɔtʁ dam də paʁi; French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 for Our Lady of Paris), also known as Notre Dame Cathedral, is a Gothic
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

, Roman Catholic cathedral
Cathedral
A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

 on the eastern half of the Île de la Cité
Île de la Cité
The Île de la Cité is one of two remaining natural islands in the Seine within the city of Paris . It is the centre of Paris and the location where the medieval city was refounded....

 in the fourth arrondissement of Paris
Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

, France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

. It is the cathedral
Cathedral
A cathedral is a Christian church that contains the seat of a bishop...

 of the Catholic Archdiocese of Paris: that is, it is the church that contains the cathedra
Cathedra
A cathedra or bishop's throne is the chair or throne of a bishop. It is a symbol of the bishop's teaching authority in the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church, and has in some sense remained such in the Anglican Communion and in Lutheran churches...

(official chair) of the Archbishop of Paris
Archbishop of Paris
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Paris is one of twenty-three archdioceses of the Roman Catholic Church in France. The original diocese is traditionally thought to have been created in the 3rd century by St. Denis and corresponded with the Civitas Parisiorum; it was elevated to an archdiocese on...

, currently André Vingt-Trois
André Vingt-Trois
André Armand Vingt-Trois is a French cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church. He currently serves as Archbishop of Paris, having previously served as Archbishop of Tours from 1999 to 2005. He was elevated to the cardinalate in 2007....

. The cathedral treasury houses a reliquary with the purported Crown of Thorns
Crown of Thorns
In Christianity, the Crown of Thorns, one of the instruments of the Passion, was woven of thorn branches and placed on Jesus Christ before his crucifixion...

.

Notre Dame de Paris is widely considered one of the finest examples of French Gothic architecture
French Gothic architecture
French Gothic architecture is a style of architecture prevalent in France from 1140 until about 1500.-Sequence of Gothic styles: France:The designations of styles in French Gothic architecture are as follows:* Early Gothic* High Gothic...

 in France and in Europe, and the naturalism
Naturalism (art)
Naturalism in art refers to the depiction of realistic objects in a natural setting. The Realism movement of the 19th century advocated naturalism in reaction to the stylized and idealized depictions of subjects in Romanticism, but many painters have adopted a similar approach over the centuries...

 of its sculptures and stained glass
Stained glass
The term stained glass can refer to coloured glass as a material or to works produced from it. Throughout its thousand-year history, the term has been applied almost exclusively to the windows of churches and other significant buildings...

 are in contrast with earlier Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture
Romanesque architecture is an architectural style of Medieval Europe characterised by semi-circular arches. There is no consensus for the beginning date of the Romanesque architecture, with proposals ranging from the 6th to the 10th century. It developed in the 12th century into the Gothic style,...

. The first period of construction from 1163 into 1240s coincided with the musical experiments of the Notre Dame school
Notre Dame school
The group of composers working at or near the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris from about 1160 to 1250, along with the music they produced, is referred to as the Notre Dame school, or the Notre Dame School of Polyphony....

.

Jean de Jandun recognized the cathedral as one of Paris's three most important buildings in his 1323 "Treatise on the Praises of Paris":

The cathedral suffered desecration
Desecration
Desecration is the act of depriving something of its sacred character, or the disrespectful or contemptuous treatment of that which is held to be sacred or holy by a group or individual.-Detail:...

 during the radical phase of the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

 in the 1790s, when much of its religious imagery was damaged or destroyed. An extensive restoration
Building restoration
Building restoration describes a particular treatment approach and philosophy within the field of architectural conservation. According the U.S...

 supervised by Eugène Viollet-le-Duc
Eugène Viollet-le-Duc
Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc was a French architect and theorist, famous for his interpretive "restorations" of medieval buildings. Born in Paris, he was a major Gothic Revival architect.-Early years:...

 removed remaining decoration, returning the cathedral to an 'original' gothic state.

Architecture

Notre Dame de Paris was among the first buildings in the world to use the flying buttress
Flying buttress
A flying buttress is a specific form of buttressing most strongly associated with Gothic church architecture. The purpose of any buttress is to resist the lateral forces pushing a wall outwards by redirecting them to the ground...

 (arched exterior supports). The building was not originally designed to include the flying buttresses around the choir and nave
Nave
In Romanesque and Gothic Christian abbey, cathedral basilica and church architecture, the nave is the central approach to the high altar, the main body of the church. "Nave" was probably suggested by the keel shape of its vaulting...

. 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 the pattern. The cathedral was essentially complete by 1345.

Construction

In 1160, because the church in Paris had become the "Parisian church of the kings of Europe", Bishop Maurice de Sully
Maurice de Sully
Maurice de Sully was Bishop of Paris from 1160 until his death.-Biography:He was born of humble parents at Sully-sur-Loire , near Orléans, at the beginning of the twelfth century. He came to Paris towards 1140 and studied for the ecclesiastical state. He soon became known as an able professor of...

 deemed the previous Paris cathedral, Saint-Étienne (St Stephen's), which had been founded in the 4th century, unworthy of its lofty role, and had it demolished shortly after he assumed the title of Bishop of Paris. As with most foundation myths
Founding myth
A national myth is an inspiring narrative or anecdote about a nation's past. Such myths often serve as an important national symbol and affirm a set of national values. A national myth may sometimes take the form of a national epic...

, this account needs to be taken with a grain of salt
Grain of salt
a grain of salt, in modern English, is an idiom which means to view something with skepticism, or to not take it literally. It derives from the Latin phrase, grano salis....

; archeological excavations in the 20th century suggested that the Merovingian Cathedral replaced by Sully was itself a massive structure, with a five-aisled nave and a facade some 36m across. It seems likely therefore that the faults with the previous structure were exaggerated by the Bishop to help justify the rebuilding in a newer style. According to legend, Sully had a vision of a glorious new cathedral for Paris, and sketched it on the ground outside 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.
Construction began in 1163, during the reign of Louis VII
Louis VII of France
Louis VII was King of France, the son and successor of Louis VI . He ruled from 1137 until his death. He was a member of the House of Capet. His reign was dominated by feudal struggles , and saw the beginning of the long rivalry between France and England...

, and opinion differs as to whether Sully or Pope Alexander III
Pope Alexander III
Pope Alexander III , born Rolando of Siena, was Pope from 1159 to 1181. He is noted in history for laying the foundation stone for the Notre Dame de Paris.-Church career:...

 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 choir took from 1163 until around 1177 and the new High Altar was consecrated in 1182 (it was normal practice for the eastern end of a new church to be completed first, so that a temporary wall could be erected at the west of the choir, allowing the chapter to use it without interruption while the rest of the building slowly took shape). After Bishop Maurice de Sully's death in 1196, his successor, Eudes de Sully
Eudes de Sully
Eudes de Sully was bishop of Paris, from 1198 to 1208.-Life:On the political stage, he came into conflict with the French king, Philip Augustus, over Philip's intended repudiation of his wife....

 (no relation) oversaw the completion of the transept
Transept
For the periodical go to The Transept.A transept is a transverse section, of any building, which lies across the main body of the building. In Christian churches, a transept is an area set crosswise to the nave in a cruciform building in Romanesque and Gothic Christian church architecture...

s and pressed ahead with the nave
Nave
In Romanesque and Gothic Christian abbey, cathedral basilica and church architecture, the nave is the central approach to the high altar, the main body of the church. "Nave" was probably suggested by the keel shape of its vaulting...

, which was nearing completion at the time of his own death in 1208. By this stage, the western facade had also been laid out, though it was not completed until around the mid 1240s.

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
Rose window
A Rose window is often used as a generic term applied to a circular window, but is especially used for those found in churches of the Gothic architectural style and being divided into segments by stone mullions and tracery...

 and the great halls beneath the towers.

The most significant change in design came in the mid 13th century, when the transepts were remodeled in the latest Rayonnant
Rayonnant
Rayonnant is a term used to describe a period in the development of French Gothic architecture, ca. 1240–1350. Developing out of the High Gothic style, Rayonnant is characterised by a shift in focus away from the great scale and spatial rationalism of buildings like Chartres Cathedral or the...

 style; in the late 1240s Jean de Chelles
Jean de Chelles
Jean de Chelles was a master mason and sculptor who was one of the architects at the Cathedral of Nôtre Dame de Paris. On the exterior wall of the south transept a stone plaque is signed Johanne Magistro and dated February 1257, documenting the initiation of alterations to the transept and its...

 added a gabled portal to the north transept topped off by a spectacular rose window. Shortly afterwards (from 1258) Pierre de Montreuil
Peter of Montereau
Pierre de Montereau or Pierre de Montreuil was a French architect. He is widely recognized as one of the most important proponents of Gothic architecture, though little is known of his life and sources vary as to which buildings are by him.After some time training in Champagne, he worked on the...

 executed a similar scheme on the South transept. Both these transept portals were richly embellished with sculpture; the south portal features scenes from the lives of St Stephen and of various local saints, while the north portal featured the infancy of Christ and the story of Theophilus in the tympanum, with a highly influential statue of the Virgin and Child in the trumeau
Portal (architecture)
Portal is a general term describing an opening in the walls of a building, gate or fortification, and especially a grand entrance to an important structure. Doors, metal gates or portcullis in the opening can be used to control entry or exit. The surface surrounding the opening may be made of...

.

Timeline of construction

  • 1160 Maurice de Sully
    Maurice de Sully
    Maurice de Sully was Bishop of Paris from 1160 until his death.-Biography:He was born of humble parents at Sully-sur-Loire , near Orléans, at the beginning of the twelfth century. He came to Paris towards 1140 and studied for the ecclesiastical state. He soon became known as an able professor of...

     (named Bishop of Paris), orders the original cathedral demolished.
  • 1163 Cornerstone
    Cornerstone
    The cornerstone concept is derived from the first stone set in the construction of a masonry foundation, important since all other stones will be set in reference to this stone, thus determining the position of the entire structure.Over time a cornerstone became a ceremonial masonry stone, or...

     laid for Notre Dame de Paris—construction begins.
  • 1182 Apse
    Apse
    In architecture, the apse is a semicircular recess covered with a hemispherical vault or semi-dome...

     and choir completed.
  • 1196 Bishop Maurice de Sully dies.
  • c.1200 Work begins on western facade.
  • 1208 Bishop Eudes de Sully dies. Nave
    Nave
    In Romanesque and Gothic Christian abbey, cathedral basilica and church architecture, the nave is the central approach to the high altar, the main body of the church. "Nave" was probably suggested by the keel shape of its vaulting...

     vaults nearing completion.
  • 1225 Western facade completed.
  • 1250 Western towers and north rose window completed.
  • c.1245–1260s Transepts remodelled in the Rayonnant
    Rayonnant
    Rayonnant is a term used to describe a period in the development of French Gothic architecture, ca. 1240–1350. Developing out of the High Gothic style, Rayonnant is characterised by a shift in focus away from the great scale and spatial rationalism of buildings like Chartres Cathedral or the...

     style by Jean de Chelles
    Jean de Chelles
    Jean de Chelles was a master mason and sculptor who was one of the architects at the Cathedral of Nôtre Dame de Paris. On the exterior wall of the south transept a stone plaque is signed Johanne Magistro and dated February 1257, documenting the initiation of alterations to the transept and its...

     then Pierre de Montreuil
    Peter of Montereau
    Pierre de Montereau or Pierre de Montreuil was a French architect. He is widely recognized as one of the most important proponents of Gothic architecture, though little is known of his life and sources vary as to which buildings are by him.After some time training in Champagne, he worked on the...

  • 1250–1345 Remaining elements completed

Alterations, vandalism and restorations

In 1548, rioting Huguenots damaged features of the cathedral, considering them idolatrous
Idolatry
Idolatry is a pejorative term for the worship of an idol, a physical object such as a cult image, as a god, or practices believed to verge on worship, such as giving undue honour and regard to created forms other than God. In all the Abrahamic religions idolatry is strongly forbidden, although...

. During the reigns of Louis XIV
Louis XIV of France
Louis XIV , known as Louis the Great or the Sun King , was a Bourbon monarch who ruled as King of France and Navarre. His reign, from 1643 to his death in 1715, began at the age of four and lasted seventy-two years, three months, and eighteen days...

 and Louis XV
Louis XV of France
Louis XV was a Bourbon monarch who ruled as King of France and of Navarre from 1 September 1715 until his death. He succeeded his great-grandfather at the age of five, his first cousin Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, served as Regent of the kingdom until Louis's majority in 1723...

, the cathedral underwent major alterations as part of an ongoing attempt to modernize cathedrals throughout Europe. A colossal statue of St Christopher, standing against a pillar near the western entrance and dating from 1413, was destroyed in 1786. Tombs and stained glass windows were destroyed. The north and south rose windows were spared this fate, however.

In 1793, during the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

, the cathedral was rededicated to the Cult of Reason
Cult of Reason
The Cult of Reason was an atheistic belief system established in France and intended as a replacement for Christianity during the French Revolution.-Origins:...

, and then to the Cult of the Supreme Being
Cult of the Supreme Being
The Cult of the Supreme Being was a form of deism established in France by Maximilien Robespierre during the French Revolution. It was intended to become the state religion of the new French Republic.- Origins :...

. During this time, many of the treasures of the cathedral were either destroyed or plundered. The statues of biblical kings of Judah
Kingdom of Judah
The Kingdom of Judah was a Jewish state established in the Southern Levant during the Iron Age. It is often referred to as the "Southern Kingdom" to distinguish it from the northern Kingdom of Israel....

 (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
Musée de Cluny
The Musée de Cluny , officially known as Musée National du Moyen Âge , is a museum in Paris, France...

. For a time, Lady Liberty
Liberty (goddess)
Goddesses named for and representing the concept Liberty have existed in many cultures, including classical examples dating from the Roman Empire and some national symbols such as the British "Britannia" or the Irish "Kathleen Ni Houlihan"....

 replaced the Virgin Mary on several altars. The cathedral's great bells managed to avoid being melted down. The cathedral came to be used as a warehouse for the storage of food.

A controversial restoration program was initiated in 1845, overseen by architects Jean-Baptiste-Antoine Lassus and Eugène Viollet-le-Duc
Eugène Viollet-le-Duc
Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc was a French architect and theorist, famous for his interpretive "restorations" of medieval buildings. Born in Paris, he was a major Gothic Revival architect.-Early years:...

. The restoration lasted twenty five years and included the construction of a flèche
Flèche
A flèche is used in French architecture to refer to a spire and in English to refer to a lead-covered timber spire, or spirelet. These are placed on the ridges of church or cathedral roofs and are usually relatively small...

 (a type of spire
Spire
A spire is a tapering conical or pyramidal structure on the top of a building, particularly a church tower. Etymologically, the word is derived from the Old English word spir, meaning a sprout, shoot, or stalk of grass....

) as well as the addition of the chimera
Gargoyle
In architecture, a gargoyle is a carved stone grotesque, usually made of granite, with a spout designed to convey water from a roof and away from the side of a building thereby preventing rainwater from running down masonry walls and eroding the mortar between...

s 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 Château de Roquetaillade
Château de Roquetaillade
The Château de Roquetaillade is a castle in Mazères , in the French département of Gironde.Charlemagne, on his way to the Pyrenees with Roland, built the first fortification there...

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

Organ

Though several organs
Pipe organ
The pipe organ is a musical instrument that produces sound by driving pressurized air through pipes selected via a keyboard. Because each organ pipe produces a single pitch, the pipes are provided in sets called ranks, each of which has a common timbre and volume throughout the keyboard compass...

 were installed in the cathedral over time, the earliest ones were inadequate for the building. The first noteworthy organ was finished in the 18th century by the noted builder François-Henri Clicquot
François-Henri Clicquot
François-Henri Clicquot was a French organ builder and was the grandson of Robert Clicquot and son of Louis-Alexandre Cliquot, who were also noted organ builders. The Clicquot firm installed the first noteworthy organ in the cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris...

. 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
Aristide Cavaillé-Coll
Aristide Cavaillé-Coll was a French organ builder. He is considered by many to be the greatest organ builder of the 19th century because he combined both science and art to make his instruments...

.

The position of titular organist ("head" or "chief" organist) at Notre-Dame is considered one of the most prestigious organist posts in France, along with the post of titular organist of Saint Sulpice
Saint-Sulpice (Paris)
Saint-Sulpice is a Roman Catholic church in Paris, France, on the east side of the Place Saint-Sulpice, in the Luxembourg Quarter of the VIe arrondissement. At 113 metres long, 58 metres in width and 34 metres tall, it is only slightly smaller than Notre-Dame and thus the second largest church in...

 in Paris, Cavaillé-Coll's largest instrument.

The organ has 7,800 pipes, with 900 classified as historical. It has 111 stops
Organ stop
An organ stop is a component of a pipe organ that admits pressurized air to a set of organ pipes. Its name comes from the fact that stops can be used selectively by the organist; some can be "on" , while others can be "off" .The term can also refer...

, five 56-key manuals
Manual (music)
A manual is a keyboard designed to be played with the hands on a pipe organ, harpsichord, clavichord, electronic organ, or synthesizer. The term "manual" is used with regard to any hand keyboard on these instruments to distinguish it from the pedalboard, which is a keyboard that the organist plays...

 and a 32-key pedalboard. In December 1992, a two year restoration of the organ was completed that fully computerized the organ under three LANs
Local area network
A local area network is a computer network that interconnects computers in a limited area such as a home, school, computer laboratory, or office building...

 (Local Area Networks). The restoration also included a number of additions, notably two further horizontal reed stops en chamade in the Cavaille-Coll style. The Notre Dame organ is therefore unique in France in having five fully independent reed stops en chamade.

Organists

Among the best-known organists at Notre Dame was Louis Vierne
Louis Vierne
Louis Victor Jules Vierne was a French organist and composer.-Life:Louis Vierne was born in Poitiers, Vienne, nearly blind due to congenital cataracts, but at an early age was discovered to have an unusual gift for music. Louis Victor Jules Vierne (8 October 1870 – 2 June 1937) was a French...

, 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.

Léonce de Saint-Martin held the post between 1932 and 1954.

Pierre Cochereau
Pierre Cochereau
Pierre Eugène Charles Cochereau , was a French organist, improviser, composer, and pedagogue.- Biography :Pierre Cochereau was born on July 9, 1924 in Saint-Mandé, near Paris. In 1929, after a few months of violin instruction, he began to take piano lessons with Marius-François Gaillard...

 initiated further alterations (many of which were already planned by Louis Vierne), including the electrification of the action
Action (piano)
The piano action mechanism, or the key action mechanism, or simply the action of a piano or other musical keyboards, is the mechanical assembly which translates the depression of the keys into rapid motion of a hammer, which creates sound by striking the strings. Action can be referred to a pianos...

 between 1959 and 1963. The original Cavaillé-Coll console, (which is now located near the organ loft), 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, a 32' plenum in the Neo-Baroque style on the Solo manual, and finally the adding of three horizontal reed stops "en chamade
En chamade
En chamade refers to powerfully-voiced reed stops in a pipe organ that have been mounted horizontally, rather than vertically, in the front of the organ case, projecting out into the church or concert hall...

" in the Spanish style.

After Cochereau's sudden death in 1984, four new titular organists were appointed at Notre Dame in 1985: Jean-Pierre Leguay Olivier Latry
Olivier Latry
Olivier Latry is a French organist, improviser and Professor of Organ in the Conservatoire de Paris. Latry was born in Boulogne-sur-Mer, France...

, 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. Since 2010 the organ is also played by Thijs Sandman, a former student of Olivier Latry.

Bells

There are five bells
Church bell
A church bell is a bell which is rung in a church either to signify the hour or the time for worshippers to go to church, perhaps to attend a wedding, funeral, or other service...

 at Notre Dame. The great bourdon bell
Bourdon (bell)
The bourdon is the heaviest of the bells that belong to a musical instrument, especially a chime or a carillon, and produces its lowest tone....

, 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. When it was discovered that the size of the bells could cause the entire building to vibrate, threatening its structural integrity, they were taken out of use. The bells also have external hammers for tune playing from a small clavier.

In the night of 24 August 1944, as the Île de la Cité
Île de la Cité
The Île de la Cité is one of two remaining natural islands in the Seine within the city of Paris . It is the centre of Paris and the location where the medieval city was refounded....

 was taken by an advance column of French and Allied armoured troops and elements of the Resistance, it was the tolling of the Emmanuel that announced to the city that its liberation was under way.

Significant events


  • 1185: Heraclius of Caesarea calls for the Third Crusade
    Third Crusade
    The Third Crusade , also known as the Kings' Crusade, was an attempt by European leaders to reconquer the Holy Land from Saladin...

     from the still-incomplete cathedral.
  • 1239: The Crown of Thorns
    Crown of Thorns
    In Christianity, the Crown of Thorns, one of the instruments of the Passion, was woven of thorn branches and placed on Jesus Christ before his crucifixion...

     is placed in the cathedral by St. Louis
    Louis IX of France
    Louis IX , commonly Saint Louis, was King of France from 1226 until his death. He was also styled Louis II, Count of Artois from 1226 to 1237. Born at Poissy, near Paris, he was an eighth-generation descendant of Hugh Capet, and thus a member of the House of Capet, and the son of Louis VIII and...

     during the construction of the Sainte-Chapelle
    Sainte-Chapelle
    La Sainte-Chapelle is the only surviving building of the Capetian royal palace on the Île de la Cité in the heart of Paris, France. It was commissioned by King Louis IX of France to house his collection of Passion Relics, including the Crown of Thorns - one of the most important relics in medieval...

    .
  • 1302: Philip the Fair
    Philip IV of France
    Philip the Fair was, as Philip IV, King of France from 1285 until his death. He was the husband of Joan I of Navarre, by virtue of which he was, as Philip I, King of Navarre and Count of Champagne from 1284 to 1305.-Youth:A member of the House of Capet, Philip was born at the Palace of...

     opens the first States-General
    French States-General
    In France under the Old Regime, the States-General or Estates-General , was a legislative assembly of the different classes of French subjects. It had a separate assembly for each of the three estates, which were called and dismissed by the king...

    .
  • 16 December 1431: Henry VI of England
    Henry VI of England
    Henry VI was King of England from 1422 to 1461 and again from 1470 to 1471, and disputed King of France from 1422 to 1453. Until 1437, his realm was governed by regents. Contemporaneous accounts described him as peaceful and pious, not suited for the violent dynastic civil wars, known as the Wars...

     is crowned King of France.
  • 1450: Wolves of Paris
    Wolves of Paris
    The Wolves of Paris were a man-eating wolf pack that entered Paris during the winter of 1450 through breaches in the city walls, killing forty people. A wolf named Courtaud, or "Bobtail", was the leader of the pack...

     are trapped and killed on the parvis of the Cathedral.
  • 7 November 1455: Isabelle Romée
    Isabelle Romée
    Isabelle Romée, also known as Isabelle de Vouthon and Isabelle d'Arc and Ysabeau Romee, was the mother of Joan of Arc. She was a native of Vouthon-Bas, a village near Domrémy-la-Pucelle where she and her husband Jacques d'Arc settled. Together they owned about of land and a modest house...

    , the mother of Joan of Arc
    Joan of Arc
    Saint Joan of Arc, nicknamed "The Maid of Orléans" , is a national heroine of France and a Roman Catholic saint. A peasant girl born in eastern France who claimed divine guidance, she led the French army to several important victories during the Hundred Years' War, which paved the way for the...

    , petitions a papal delegation to overturn her daughter's conviction for heresy
    Heresy
    Heresy is a controversial or novel change to a system of beliefs, especially a religion, that conflicts with established dogma. It is distinct from apostasy, which is the formal denunciation of one's religion, principles or cause, and blasphemy, which is irreverence toward religion...

    .
  • 1 January 1537:James V of Scotland
    James V of Scotland
    James V was King of Scots from 9 September 1513 until his death, which followed the Scottish defeat at the Battle of Solway Moss...

    , is married to Madeleine of France
  • 24 April 1558: Mary, Queen of Scots, is married to the Dauphin Francis (later Francis II of France
    Francis II of France
    Francis II was aged 15 when he succeeded to the throne of France after the accidental death of his father, King Henry II, in 1559. He reigned for 18 months before he died in December 1560...

    ), son of Henry II of France
    Henry II of France
    Henry II was King of France from 31 March 1547 until his death in 1559.-Early years:Henry was born in the royal Château de Saint-Germain-en-Laye, near Paris, the son of Francis I and Claude, Duchess of Brittany .His father was captured at the Battle of Pavia in 1525 by his sworn enemy,...

    .
  • 18 August 1572: Henry of Navarre
    Henry IV of France
    Henry IV , Henri-Quatre, was King of France from 1589 to 1610 and King of Navarre from 1572 to 1610. He was the first monarch of the Bourbon branch of the Capetian dynasty in France....

     (later Henry IV of France) marries Margaret of Valois. The marriage takes place not in the cathedral but on the parvis of the cathedral, as Henry IV is Protestant.
  • 10 September 1573: The Cathedral was the site of a vow made by Henry of Valois
    Henry III of France
    Henry III was King of France from 1574 to 1589. As Henry of Valois, he was the first elected monarch of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth with the dual titles of King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1573 to 1575.-Childhood:Henry was born at the Royal Château de Fontainebleau,...

     following the interregnum
    Interregnum
    An interregnum is a period of discontinuity or "gap" in a government, organization, or social order...

     of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth that he would both respect traditional liberties and the recently passed religious freedom law.
  • 2 December 1804: the coronation ceremony of Napoleon I
    Napoleon I of France
    Napoleon Bonaparte was a French military and political leader during the latter stages of the French Revolution.As Napoleon I, he was Emperor of the French from 1804 to 1815...

     and his wife Joséphine
    Joséphine de Beauharnais
    Joséphine de Beauharnais was the first wife of Napoléon Bonaparte, and thus the first Empress of the French. Her first husband Alexandre de Beauharnais had been guillotined during the Reign of Terror, and she had been imprisoned in the Carmes prison until her release five days after Alexandre's...

    , with Pope Pius VII
    Pope Pius VII
    Pope Pius VII , born Barnaba Niccolò Maria Luigi Chiaramonti, was a monk, theologian and bishop, who reigned as Pope from 14 March 1800 to 20 August 1823.-Early life:...

     officiating.
  • 1831: The Hunchback of Notre-Dame book published by Victor Hugo
    Victor Hugo
    Victor-Marie Hugo was a Frenchpoet, playwright, novelist, essayist, visual artist, statesman, human rights activist and exponent of the Romantic movement in France....

  • 18 April 1909: Joan of Arc is beatified
    Beatification
    Beatification is a recognition accorded by the Catholic Church of a dead person's entrance into Heaven and capacity to intercede on behalf of individuals who pray in his or her name . Beatification is the third of the four steps in the canonization process...

    .
  • 16 May 1920: Joan of Arc
    Joan of Arc
    Saint Joan of Arc, nicknamed "The Maid of Orléans" , is a national heroine of France and a Roman Catholic saint. A peasant girl born in eastern France who claimed divine guidance, she led the French army to several important victories during the Hundred Years' War, which paved the way for the...

     is canonized
    Canonization
    Canonization is the act by which a Christian church declares a deceased person to be a saint, upon which declaration the person is included in the canon, or list, of recognized saints. Originally, individuals were recognized as saints without any formal process...

    .
  • 1900: Louis Vierne
    Louis Vierne
    Louis Victor Jules Vierne was a French organist and composer.-Life:Louis Vierne was born in Poitiers, Vienne, nearly blind due to congenital cataracts, but at an early age was discovered to have an unusual gift for music. Louis Victor Jules Vierne (8 October 1870 – 2 June 1937) was a French...

     is appointed organist of Notre-Dame de Paris after a heavy competition (with judges including Charles-Marie Widor
    Charles-Marie Widor
    Charles-Marie Jean Albert Widor was a French organist, composer and teacher.-Life:Widor was born in Lyon, to a family of organ builders, and initially studied music there with his father, François-Charles Widor, titular organist of Saint-François-de-Sales from 1838 to 1889...

    ) against the 500 most talented organ players of the era. On 2 June 1937 Louis Vierne dies at the cathedral organ (as was his life-long wish) near the end of his 1750th concert.
  • 26 August 1944: The Te Deum
    Te Deum
    The Te Deum is an early Christian hymn of praise. The title is taken from its opening Latin words, Te Deum laudamus, rendered literally as "Thee, O God, we praise"....

     Mass
    Mass (liturgy)
    "Mass" is one of the names by which the sacrament of the Eucharist is called in the Roman Catholic Church: others are "Eucharist", the "Lord's Supper", the "Breaking of Bread", the "Eucharistic assembly ", the "memorial of the Lord's Passion and Resurrection", the "Holy Sacrifice", the "Holy and...

     takes place in the cathedral to celebrate the liberation of Paris
    Liberation of Paris
    The Liberation of Paris took place during World War II from 19 August 1944 until the surrender of the occupying German garrison on August 25th. It could be regarded by some as the last battle in the Battle for Normandy, though that really ended with the crushing of the Wehrmacht forces between the...

    . (According to some accounts the Mass was interrupted by sniper fire from both the internal and external galleries.)
  • 12 November 1970: The Requiem
    Requiem
    A Requiem or Requiem Mass, also known as Mass for the dead or Mass of the dead , is a Mass celebrated for the repose of the soul or souls of one or more deceased persons, using a particular form of the Roman Missal...

     Mass of General Charles de Gaulle
    Charles de Gaulle
    Charles André Joseph Marie de Gaulle was a French general and statesman who led the Free French Forces during World War II. He later founded the French Fifth Republic in 1958 and served as its first President from 1959 to 1969....

     is held.
  • 6 June 1971: Philippe Petit
    Philippe Petit
    Philippe Petit is a French high-wire artist who gained fame for his high-wire walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, New York, on 7 August 1974...

     surreptitiously strings a wire between the two towers of Notre Dame and tight-rope walks across it. Petit later performed a similar act between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center
    World Trade Center
    The original World Trade Center was a complex with seven buildings featuring landmark twin towers in Lower Manhattan, New York City, United States. The complex opened on April 4, 1973, and was destroyed in 2001 during the September 11 attacks. The site is currently being rebuilt with five new...

    .
  • 31 May 1980: After the Magnificat
    Magnificat
    The Magnificat — also known as the Song of Mary or the Canticle of Mary — is a canticle frequently sung liturgically in Christian church services. It is one of the eight most ancient Christian hymns and perhaps the earliest Marian hymn...

     of this day, Pope John Paul II
    Pope John Paul II
    Blessed Pope John Paul II , born Karol Józef Wojtyła , reigned as Pope of the Catholic Church and Sovereign of Vatican City from 16 October 1978 until his death on 2 April 2005, at of age. His was the second-longest documented pontificate, which lasted ; only Pope Pius IX ...

     celebrates Mass on the parvis of the cathedral.
  • January 1996: The Requiem Mass of François Mitterrand
    François Mitterrand
    François Maurice Adrien Marie Mitterrand was the 21st President of the French Republic and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra, serving from 1981 until 1995. He is the longest-serving President of France and, as leader of the Socialist Party, the only figure from the left so far elected President...

     is held.
  • 10 August 2007: The Requiem Mass of Cardinal Jean-Marie Lustiger, former Archbishop of Paris, is held.


The cathedral is renowned for its Lent
Lent
In the Christian tradition, Lent is the period of the liturgical year from Ash Wednesday to Easter. The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer – through prayer, repentance, almsgiving and self-denial – for the annual commemoration during Holy Week of the Death and...

 sermons founded by the famous Dominican
Dominican Order
The Order of Preachers , after the 15th century more commonly known as the Dominican Order or Dominicans, is a Catholic religious order founded by Saint Dominic and approved by Pope Honorius III on 22 December 1216 in France...

 Jean-Baptiste Henri Lacordaire
Jean-Baptiste Henri Lacordaire
Jean-Baptiste Henri-Dominique Lacordaire , often styled Henri-Dominique Lacordaire, was a French ecclesiastic, preacher, journalist and political activist...

 in the 1860s. In recent years, however, an increasing number have been given by leading public figures and state
employed academics.

Popular Culture

Because of its beauty, history, and global fame, Notre-Dame has featured prominently in the arts, across multiple genres.
  • Victor Hugo
    Victor Hugo
    Victor-Marie Hugo was a Frenchpoet, playwright, novelist, essayist, visual artist, statesman, human rights activist and exponent of the Romantic movement in France....

     used it as the primary setting of his legendary novel, The Hunchback of Notre Dame
    The Hunchback of Notre Dame
    The Hunchback of Notre-Dame is a novel by Victor Hugo published in 1831. The French title refers to the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, on which the story is centered.-Background:...

    , as it is used in all films based on the novel.
  • The American film Sergeant York
    Sergeant York
    Sergeant York is a 1941 biographical film about the life of Alvin York, the most-decorated American soldier of World War I. It was directed by Howard Hawks and was the highest-grossing film of the year....

    mentions the cathedral in narration provided by the titular character, derived from the real Alvin York
    Alvin York
    Alvin Cullum York was one of the most decorated American soldiers in World War I. He received the Medal of Honor for leading an attack on a German machine gun nest, taking 32 machine guns, killing 28 German soldiers and capturing 132 others...

    's letters home to his family during WWI, in one of which he mentions, "They have a church here you could plant a crop of corn in."
  • The 2008 action film Taken
    Taken
    Taken, also known as Steven Spielberg Presents Taken, is a science fiction miniseries which first aired on the Sci-Fi Channel in 2002 and won an Emmy Award for Outstanding Miniseries...

    , starring Liam Neeson
    Liam Neeson
    Liam John Neeson, OBE is an Irish actor who has been nominated for an Oscar, a BAFTA and three Golden Globe Awards.He has starred in a number of notable roles including Oskar Schindler in Schindler's List, Michael Collins in Michael Collins, Peyton Westlake in Darkman, Jean Valjean in Les...

     features Neeson's character standing atop one of the belltowers while he makes a phone call.

See also

  • Maîtrise Notre Dame de Paris
    Maîtrise Notre Dame de Paris
    Maîtrise Notre Dame de Paris is a noted pre-college music school situated in Paris, France. Its origins can be dated to the 12th century, and are associated with the rise of the cathedral of Notre Dame...

  • Musée de Notre Dame de Paris
    Musée de Notre Dame de Paris
    The Musée de Notre Dame de Paris was a small museum dedicated to the cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris and its archaeology. It stands at 10, rue du Cloître Notre Dame, Paris, France, and was open to the public several afternoons per week; an admission fee was charged.The museum was established in...

  • List of tallest buildings and structures in the Paris region
  • Roman Catholic Marian churches
    Roman Catholic Marian churches
    Throughout history, Roman Catholics have built churches to venerate the Blessed Virgin Mary. Today, a large number of Roman Catholic churches dedicated to the Blessed Virgin exist on all continents...


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
x
OK