The last couple of days, we have had some +15-18 °C (I’m afraid I have to translate this to the, sorry, “stupid” °F: 60-65), some mostly blue skies...
It's really nice to again be able to have some coffee or wine on a terrace...
... and for the kids to be able to play outdoors. (This is an empty space between two buildings, which has (temporarily?) been transformed to a playground.)
Of course, especially welcome are the leaves, flowers...
The top picture represents the North Rose Window from 1250 – it has its almost copy in the South Rose Window from 1260. Both have of course suffered from time and revolutions and been restored, but basically they are as they were. Togehter with the third Rose Window - behind the organ - they are certainly worth all our admiration!
As most churches Notre Dame suffered a lot during the Revolution, but was restored as close as possible to its original state during the 19th century by the architect Viollet-le-Duc (see previous post), who also restored and saved the Sainte Chapelle (see previous post), the Saint Denis basilica (see previous post) and a lot more.
The mostly rich ornamentation is very present here; it's amazing to see how the whole building is covered by friezes, statues of saints, prophets, kings and also by legendary creatures, gargoyles... originally partly painted, as often was the case with gothic church facades.
Many of the stained glass windows have suffered from previous restorations, revolutions..., but fortunately the rose windows which we see here only from the exterior (we will see them from the interior in my following post), from the 1250’s, are still there; the smaller one on the front facade is even from 1225.The towers date from about 1250 and are 63 m (207 ft) high. You can visit the SouthTower. There are some 400 steps to climb (no lift).
The top picture as some of the other ones where we can see some “funny” creatures are taken from half way up.
On the way to the top you can have a look at the biggest bell (the Emmanuel bell) which is to be found in this tower. It dates from 1685 and has since rung out the high historical points of the Cathedral, of Paris, of France...From the very top, you have of course some splendid views of Paris. We can also have a look at the “parvis”, the open space in front of the Cathedral and see the traces which have been left of the small streets and buildings, including the old hospital “Hôtel Dieu”, which still existed here until around 1870, when Baron Haussmann “cleaned” it all (see previous post).
On one of the close-ups we can see the little, perhaps oldest, Paris church, Saint-Julien-du-Pauvre with the oldest Paris tree in front of it, planted in 1601 (see previous post) and the bookshop “Shakespeare & Co” (see previous post).__________________
*/ “Gothic” architecture has actually nothing to do with the historical Goths. The Goths are said to have their origin in “Götaland”, in the south of Sweden. They crossed the Baltic Sea during the 2nd century and established themselves in the present Poland. Different Gothic civilisations, often referred to as “vandals” can be found in Europe until the 6th century. “Gothic” architecture is actually originally a pejorative term used by the Italian Renaissance finding this type of architecture too extravagant and not in line with their Roman ideas.