La Cathédrale Notre Dame d’Amiens

D and I had just brief stops here, so we did not take a lot of detailed photography of this massive and impressive cathedral.

I hope one day to make it back to Amiens to see more of this incredible monument.

A wee bit of history. Notre Dame was started in the year 1220, and it’s construction continued up to the end of the 15th century.The cathedral avoided almost tumbling down, in 1498-99, by adding a metal meshing. Which saved and reenforced the structure.

On a practical note, Notre Dame is the tallest cathedral among those that are complete ( not ruins), and boasts the greatest interior volume of a cathedral (estimated at 200,000 m³). My pictures just scratch the surface for it’s height as the vaults of the nave  are 42.30 m high.

This exceptional cathdral is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1981.

As you can imagine, there are so many elements of architecture & art here; we only skimmed through, and I did not photograph everything :

Looking at the cathderal from the front. There are so many impressive sculptures on the front.

Looking towards tha alter. Outside of when mess is celebrated or during tours, this gate stays closed.

A photgrapher’s frustration to take pictures by sliding you camera lens between the bars… I had to lighten this image being so far away.It looks all very shiny and very baroque.

The weather of the day ( partly cloudy) did not  permit the sun to coming streaming through the stained glass windows.But I did catch this :

I liked the postion of the pulpit with the stained glass window in the back. It’s not any pulpit, it’s called the Pulpit of the Truth, with up there an angel pointing it’s finger towards the sky.Very cool.

Then I saw this sad fellow :

I read the story about him; he is the “ange pleureur ” or crying angel. This angel is featured on the Mausoleum of a priest named Guilain Lucas. This priest, who died in 1628, had founded an orphanage. On the left of the angel is a skull, and on the right an hour-glass, both symbolic of how short Life is.
I also learned that during WWI, millions of objects of the angel, including post cards & medallions were sold, including to soldiers.

9 thoughts on “La Cathédrale Notre Dame d’Amiens

  1. I believe I’ve read about this cathedral in one of the travel mags that we occasional pick up. You’ve done a good job with the outdoor shot….I find it difficult to capture the feel of immenseness when it comes to large, ornate buildings!

  2. Hi Ro,

    Thanks for the pat on the back 🙂 Indoor shoots in churchs are very challenging. The light varies, and most of the time you are in semi-darkness. I especially regretted not being able to take the stained glass windows, which are my favorite elements in gothic churches.

    Ah yes… how to capture immenseness ?? One has to be there or have equipment at least.

    Have a great day 🙂

  3. Gorgeous photographs, Barbara!

    They reminded me of the movie “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.”

    The exterior is so ornate…OMG, it’s beautiful!

    As well is the interior. The lighting is spectacular.

    Interesting to hear about the “ange pleureur.” And he really does look like he’s crying.

    Thanks for sharing, my Philly friend!


  4. Thank you Barbara. It’s a magnificent building and the west front is very impressive. If you get the chance, revisit Amiens in the summer months when this huge facade is lit up showing the many bright colours which the statues were painted in during the Middle Ages. It’s a fantastic experience with music and commentary and it happens when night has fallen – pure magic!

    Joyce :-))

  5. Bonjour les amis,

    Ron- Hellooo !
    Now, I was waiting for someone to say that this was like in the film. I think that generations of people outside of Europe have know the Gothic style of churches first through the Hunchback of Notre Dame.
    Yes, the style is very close ( same period). Maybe some of the same dudes who did the carving on one church also did the other.

    It is truly a masterpiece.

    Happy weekend to you, amigo XXX

    Joyce- I happen to be answering this comment to a lady who knows Amiens, so this cathedral has no secret for you. I have never seen the cathedral lighted up like it is in the summer evenings. That must be spectacular indeed ! Humm… I shall “file” that idea 🙂
    Hugs to you & Barry xx

    Salut ! You will indeed feel “dwarfed” in here. It’s worth exploring just for the immensity and beauty of it’s art & architecture.
    I had better luck with the outside structure than the inside; the light was lacking as often in a church.
    See you soon et bises x

    And happy weekend to all.

  6. Pour moi c’est tout simplement la plus belle ^_^
    Merci pour toutes ces jolies photos d’Amiens (ouf je ne suis pas dessus !!)
    Bisous à tous les deux

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