Saint Martin Cathedral: The Cathedral of Mainz
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Saint Martin Cathedral: The Cathedral of Mainz

Mainz Cathedral was formally known in English as St. Martin Cathedral (German: Mainzer Dom). Mainz Cathedral is located near the historical center and market square of the city of Mainz, Germany.


Mainz Cathedral was formally known in English as St. Martin Cathedral (German: Mainzer Dom). Mainz Cathedral is located near the historical center and market square of the city of Mainz, Germany.

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The architecture of the cathedral predominantly follows Romanesque style. But later, over many centuries there has been number of changes as a result of various architectural influences. But along with the cathedrals of Worms and Speyer, Mainz Cathedral represents the high point of Romanesque cathedral architecture in Germany.

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The Cathedral of Mainz dates from 975 AD but was continually rebuilt and restored, reaching its present form mainly in the 13th and 14th centuries, but through the centuries, the cathedral burned down several times. For centuries, the Archbishopric of Mainz was one of the most powerful positions in Germany with both temporal and spiritual powers. This wealth is reflected in the cathedral’s interior with many Baroque art works – the tombs of the bishops are often lavish.

During Willigis' period, the city of Mainz flourished economically. Willigis was the highest rank of bishop of Mainz in 975 and he became one of the most influential princes of over the time. He ordered the construction of a new cathedral in the pre-Romanesque style. He visualized Mainz as the second Rome and this new impressive building was a part of that dream. The purpose of this new cathedral was to take over the functions of two churches. Those are the old cathedral and St. Alban's, which was the largest church in the area.

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It was at Mainz Cathedral on March 27, 1188, that Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I (Frederick Barbarossa), took up the Cross in the Third Crusade called by Pope Gregory VIII. During World War II, Allied bombing of Mainz destroyed almost whole of the city, but the cathedral was left almost entirely untouched.

Below the largest dome, a combination of Romanesque and Baroque styles is the transept, separating the west chancel from the nave and smaller east chancel. Many of the supporting pillars along the aisles of the nave are decorated with carved and painted statues of French and German saints.

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The cathedral's Diocesan Museum houses a collection of religious art. It contain exhibitions of reliquaries and medieval sculpture, including works by the Master of Naumburg.

In the 1,000-year-old cathedral crypt is a contemporary gold reliquary of the saints of Mainz. Among the most impressive furnishings in the sanctuary are rococo choir stalls and an early-14th-century pewter baptismal font. The city's huge main cathedral is over 1,000 years old and contains the tombs of several of the city's archbishops.


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Comments (12)

Wonderful and beautiful photos too. +1

Thank you for this beautiful walk through.

good one, bro. Thanks for the tour.

Thanks a lot Beverly and Brenda, appreciated.

Thanks Bro, i just published our very own Malate church the other day.

Good job Ron. These European structures are truly impressive. Voted up.

Thanks a lot Likha, appreciated.

Just when I think I have already seen my favorite you show me and describe some thing more beautiful. Very well done, my friend!

its unbelievable, how people were able to build these kinds of structure before. amazing

Thanks a lot Roberta. thanks a lot macherie.

Truly an expert with these topics. Another good job here :)

Thanks a lot Phoenix.