Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Chronicles from Paris | Île de la Cité

The history of Paris is strongly connected to the Île de la Cité, usually referred to be the original site of the Parisii tribes. In fact, when Julius Ceasar arrived there in 53 BC he only found a primitive village of fisherman. The Roman presence expanded the settlement to the left bank of the Seine. Later, the Francs conquered the city, named it Paris and made it the capital of their realm. The rest is history.

Along the island we can find impressive buildings like the Conciergerie or the Palais de Justice. Nevertheless, the focal point of this small island is Notre-Dame, the great medieval cathedral visited by millions of tourists from all over the world. Built over a pre-existent roman temple, it took 170 years to grow this master-piece of Gothic architecture. With 130 meters long, its towers rise 69 meters high and the spectacular  flying buttresses on the eastern part of the cathedral present a span of 15 meters. The beautiful stained glass in the interior and the famous gargoyles and and chimeras complete the appeal of this monument.

After visiting the cathedral, you can relax walking around the Marché aux Fleurs et Oiseaux (Flower and Birds Market) and before you left the island don't forget to visit the Sainte-Chapelle. Smaller than Notre Dame and not so visible from the street, the interiors of this pearl of Gothic architecture are absolutely stunning. The atmosphere inside is almost magical with the colored light filtered through the immense stained glass windows. It's an inspirational place and a monument to human creativity and resourcefulness.

1 comment:

  1. I always love blog posts that have a bit of history to them!


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