Reims Cathedral facts for kids

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Reims Cathedral
Cathedral of Our Lady of Reims
Facade, looking northeast
Façade, looking northeast

Location in France

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Location Place du Cardinal Luçon, 51100
Reims, France
Country  France
Denomination Roman Catholic
Website www.cathedrale-reims.com
History
Dedication Our Lady of Reims
Significant associated people Clovis I
Architecture
Status Cathedral
Functional status Active
Architect(s) Jean d'Orbais
Jean-le-Loup
Gaucher of Reims
Bernard de Soissons
Architectural type Church
Style French Gothic
Years built 1211–1345
Groundbreaking 1211 (1211)
Completed 1275 (1275)
Specifications
Length 149.17 m (489.4 ft)
Floor area 6,650 m2 (71,600 sq ft)
Number of towers 2
Tower height 81 m (266 ft)
Bells 2 (in south tower)
Administration
Archdiocese Reims (Seat)
Clergy
Archbishop Thierry Jordan
Priest in charge Jean-Pierre Laurent

Notre Dame de Reims is a cathedral in Reims. It was built in the 13th century. It is not as old as Notre-Dame de Paris or Notre-Dame de Chartres. The building process started in 1211. Most of the works were done in 1275. It was built before the Cathedrals of Strasbourg, Amiens and Beauvais, which are also called Notre Dame.

The cathedral is one of the best examples of Gothic architecture. It has been a World Heritage Site since 1991. In 2006, about 1.5 million people visited it.

The Kings of France were crowned in this cathedral. The last coronation ceremony was that of Charles X of France in 1825.

Interior

Cathédrale de Reims — Nef
Nave

The interior of the cathedral is 138.75 m (about 455 ft) long, 30 m (approx. 98 feet) wide in the nave, and 38 m (about 125 feet) high in the centre. It comprises a nave with aisles, transepts with aisles, a choir with double aisles, and an apse with ambulatory and radiating chapels. It has interesting stained glass ranging from the 13th to the 20th century. The rose window over the main portal and the gallery beneath are of rare magnificence.

Cathédrale de Reims — Collatéral nord
North aisle

The cathedral possesses fine tapestries. Of these the most important series is that presented by Robert de Lenoncourt, archbishop under François I (1515–1547), representing the life of the Virgin. They are now to be seen in the former bishop's palace, the Palace of Tau. The north transept contains a fine organ in a flamboyant Gothic case. The choir clock is ornamented with curious mechanical figures. Marc Chagall designed the stained glass installed in 1974 in the axis of the apse.

The treasury, kept in the Palace of Tau, includes many precious objects, among which is the Sainte Ampoule, or holy flask, the successor of the ancient one that contained the oil with which French kings were anointed, which was broken during the French Revolution, a fragment of which the present Ampoule contains.

800th anniversary

In 2011, the city of Reims celebrated the cathedral's 800th anniversary. The celebrations ran from 6 May to 23 October. Concerts, street performances, exhibitions, conferences, and a series of evening light shows highlighted the cathedral and its 800th anniversary. In addition, six new stained glass windows designed by Imi Knoebel, a German artist, were inaugurated on June 25, 2011. The six windows cover an area of 128 square meters (1,380 sq ft) and are positioned on both sides of the Chagall windows in the apse of the cathedral.

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