The Cathedral of Saint Gatien: Tours Cathedral
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The Cathedral of Saint Gatien: Tours Cathedral

The Cathedral of Tours (Cathédrale Saint-Gatien de Tours), dedicated to Saint Gatien, its first bishop, was begun about 1170 to replace the newly constructed cathedral that burned down in 1166 during the war between Louis VII of France and Henry II of England.

THE CATHEDRAL OF SAINT GATIEN: TOURS CATHEDRAL

Saint Gatien's Cathedral is the Roman Catholic cathedral church of the Tours diocese and the metropolitan cathedral of the Tours ecclesiastic province, in Indre-et-Loire, France. Saint Gatien's Cathedral was constructed between 1170 and 1547 and the first time construction was located at the south end of the bridge over the Loire, on the road from Paris to the south-west of France. Since 1862, the monument was classified as historical.

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Side view of Tours Cathedral - Photo by Julian H

The Cathedral of Tours (Cathédrale Saint-Gatien de Tours), dedicated to Saint Gatien, its first bishop, was begun about 1170 to replace the newly constructed cathedral that burned down in 1166 during the war between Louis VII of France and Henry II of England.

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The Flamboyant Gothic facade of Tours Cathedral - Photo by Julian H

Construction on Tours Cathedral proceeded at a slow pace over the centuries until 1547. The lowest stages of the west towers belong to the 12th century, but the rest of the west end is in abundant detailed Flamboyant Gothic of the 15th century. It was completed just as the Renaissance was prosperous, which are visible in the belfries. Henry James described and complimented the cathedral's "charming mouse colored complexion." (A Little Tour in France).

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Grand Gothic nave - Photo by couscouschocolat

The interior was an amazing triple-nave church, building continued as usual from the sanctuary and choir, which has some of the finest stained glass (13th century), and worked pier by pier going down the nave. The choir is from the 13th century; the transept and east bays of the nave are 14th century and the cloister on the north is contemporary with the facade.

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North Rose window - Photo by paradoxplace

A little beyond the south transept abides the tomb of the sons of Charles VIII and Anne de Bretagne. After the death of both Charles and his sons, the Valois line came to an end and Anne was obliged by law to marry Charles' cousin, Louis XII.

When the 15th century illuminator Jean Fouquet was set the task of illuminating Josephus's Jewish Antiquities, his depiction of Solomon's Temple was patterned after the almost complete Cathedral of Tours.

The ambiance of the Gothic cathedral close permeates Honoré de Balzac's dark short novel of jealousy and provincial intrigues, Le Curé de Tours (The Curate of Tours) and his medieval story Maitre Cornelius opens within the cathedral itself.

Reference:

http://www.funtouristattractions.com/a/saint-gatien-s-cathedral-tours-france/

http://www.sacred-destinations.com/france/tours-cathedral.htm

http://www.worldreviewer.com/travel-guides/cathedral-church/tours-cathedral/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tours_Cathedral

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/37805331

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Comments (8)

Beautiful cathedral....nice post. :-)

Thanks a lot Chan.

Wonderful!

Thanks a lot Bristow.

Another exceptional architectural tour, Ron.

Beautiful pictures and a great article!

Great article as always. Thanks!

Thanks a lot Michael, Melissa and Aileen, much appreciation to all.

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