France travel. Paris tours. Gargoyle on Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris, France. Europe tours

Chimeras and Gargoyles of the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris

Perhaps the most stunning Gothic temple in the world, Notre Dame de Paris Cathedral, is undoubtedly one of the most famous

Conceived in the 12th century and completed in the 14th, the current landmark cathedral was the very heart of medieval Paris. The idea of the gallery of chimeras on the facade of the cathedral belongs to Viollet-le-Duc. In the Middle Ages there were no chimeras on Notre Dame. The famous chimeras are hiding on the top platform at the foot of the towers.

In the gallery of chimeras, the authors gave free rein to their imagination: they created the surreal world of chimeras - demons, who looked ironically and thoughtfully at the city that stretched far below; fantastic and monstrous birds; grotesque figures of evil monsters, looking out of the most unexpected points.

The most beautiful gargoyles are believed to be at the level of the big arc-butans of the choir. Thanks to the solid limestone (lies) mined in the Seine basin, the monsters are well preserved. In addition to the ideal building material, it is worth noting that Paris of the Middle Ages was a big city, where many great masters and, in particular, sculptors flocked to work.

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France travel. Paris tours. Gargoyle on Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris, France. Europe tours

Gargoyles of Paris Notre Dame belong to the Middle Ages, and more specifically to the XIII century, and are known not less than the chimeras

Gargoyles are not the same thing as chimeras. Although they are often confused. Actually, gargouille translates from French as "gutter, drainpipe." Hence their functional, and not only decorative purpose: these monsters (dragon-shaped snakes) have long served to divert rainwater from the roofs and walls of buildings. Impressive torrential masses can erupt from their mouths far beyond the cathedral, so gargoyles, in fact, protect the walls of the temple from damage, and the foundation of the building - from destruction.

The chimeras installed at the base of the towers of Notre Dame de Paris are fantastic, grotesque, usually ugly creatures with the body of a monkey and bat wings, goat horns, snake heads, and other animal attributes. Chimeras personify human sins and evil forces. Their function, unlike gargoyles, is purely decorative.

Paris is the capital of the world, as the French say so, and one involuntarily wants to agree after visiting this unique and unforgettable city and its sights. The history of Paris has more than two millennia, during which the city has experienced bright periods of prosperity, and war, and popular uprisings and many other cultural and historical events. Paris is one of those cities that many tourists dream to visit - lovers of art, architecture, religious buildings, shopping, and just having a rest with families with children.

Sights of Paris is tourism with admiration. Paris and tourism are inseparable, more than 20 million people visit it every year, and it is the most visited city in the world. It is believed that the three main attractions of Paris are the Eiffel Tower (a symbol of France, its construction was completed in 1889), the Arc de Triomphe (a monument built by order of Napoleon Bonaparte in honor of the commemoration of his victories) and Notre Dame de Paris (the "spiritual" heart of Paris , historical monument with a long history). Their visit, along with the Louvre and the Champs-Elysees, is a mandatory component of any excursion route. However, it is obvious that in addition to the above in Paris there are still many other attractions, no less interesting and informative for most foreign tourists.

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