I still haven't seen the movie, "The Hunchback of Notre Dame", the movie that popularized the great cathedral in Paris but I have already seen the real thing, the Notre Dame de Paris. It was one of the must-see sights that was listed on our itinerary when we visited there last month.
Here's a little history of the Notre Dame of Paris and why it is so popular the world over:
The Notre Dame Cathedral is arguably the most stunning gothic cathedral in the world-- and is undoubtedly the most famous. Conceived in the 12th century and completed in the 14th, Notre Dame Cathedral was the very heartbeat of medieval Paris. After a period of neglect, it recaptured the popular imagination when 19th-century writer Victor Hugo immortalized it in "The Hunchback of Notre Dame".
The gargoyles of Notre Dame.
And what of the flying buttresses? It has a story too!
View of the Notre Dame from the south.
The flying buttresses are external arched supports and the Notre Dame is one of the first buildings in the world to use this style. The building was not originally designed to include the flying buttresses around the choir and nave. After the construction began and the thinner walls (popularized in the Gothic style) grew ever higher, stress fractures began to occur as the walls pushed outward. In response, the cathedral's architects built supports around the outside walls, and later additions continued the pattern.
A view of the Notre Dame Cathedral from the Seine River.
And this is me with the cathedral, standing tall and proud. I was standing on one of the concrete stands that's why I look as tall as the cathedral. Hihi!