I already made a reference to the Madeleine Church in a previous post which however concentrated on what is surrounding the church. I thought that the church is worth a separate post.
The present Madeleine Church (L’Eglise Sainte-Marie-Madeleine) was preceded by an old church (actually a synagogue until the 12th century). It was then already consecrated to Mary Magdalene. There were different projects during the 18th century to construct a new one, more appropriate to the distinguished surroundings. Looking down Rue Royale you can see Place de la Concorde (with preparation for the 14th July celebrations visible on the photo – see previous posts 1, 2), the National Assembly (Palais Bourbon) (see previous posts) in a similar style and the dome of the Invalides (see previous post).
Work had started when the Revolution arrived and then of course it was discussed whether to transform it to a library, a ballroom, a market place... In 1806 Napoleon decided to transform the future building to a “Temple to the Glory of the Great Army”. Finally, during the Restoration, it was again decided to make it a church, although later there were some discussions to possibly make it a railway station (before the decision about the Gare Saint Lazare). The building was finally consecrated as a church in 1842.
The church is in a neo-classical style, very much in fashion during the 18th and early 19th century.