Notre Dame

IN very early times, under the Frankish monarchs, the principal church of Paris was dedicated to St. Stephen, the Protomartyr. It stood on part of the site now covered by Notre-Dame, and was always enumerated first among the churches of the city. A smaller edifice, dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary, also occupied a part […]

Paris – St. Denis

ABOUT six miles north of the original Paris stands the great Basilica of St. Denis, —the only church in Paris, and I think in France, called by that ancient name, which carries us back at once to the days of the Roman Empire, and in itself bears evidence to the antiquity of the spot as […]

Paris – The Faubourg St. Germain.

THE town on the North Side, we saw, was early surrounded by a suburban belt of gardens and monasteries. A similar zone encircled the old University on the South Bank. The wall of Philippe Auguste, you will remember, bent abruptly southward in order to enclose the abbey of Ste. Geneviève ; but an almost more […]

Paris – The Palais De Justice And The Sainte Chapelle

GO along the Rue de Rivoli as far as the Square of the Tour St. Jacques. If driving, alight here. Turn down the Place du Châtelet to your right. In front is the pretty modern fountain of the Châtelet ; on the right, the Théâtre du Châtelet ; on the left, the Opéra Comique. The […]

Paris – St. Louis And His Island

ON the way from Notre Dame to the Ile of St. Louis we pass a small official-looking building at the extreme east end of the Ile de la Cité. It is the Morgue. But the Morgue is now closed to idle gazers, and you win your way to a sight of that melancholy slab with […]

History of Notre Dame Cathedral – Paris, France

IF the Ile de la Cité is the eye of Paris, then, to adapt one of Oliver Wendell Holmes’ metaphors, Notre Dame is its pupil. It stands on ground that has been holy, or at least religious, for many centuries, for part of its site was once occupied by the original mother church of Paris, […]

Paris – The Pantheon And St. Genevieve

THE Pantheon, like the Madeleine, has had its vicissitudes. The new Madeleine, as we shall see, was begun by Napoleon as a splendid Temple of military glory and became a church; the new Panthéon was begun by Louis XV. as a splendid cathedral and became a Temple of Glory, not, however, military but civil. Louis […]

The Basilica Of Childebert – Saint Germain Des Press

THE quaint old church of Saint-Germain-des-Pres, still dominant over an interesting quarter of Paris, on the rive gauche, was the nucleus of a large and powerful abbey, which once peopled this locality and had jurisdiction over an important section known as the Bourg Saint-Germain. The existing church, a mere fragment of the original construction, was […]

The Basilica Of Clovis – Sainte Genevieve

WHEN Paris was confined to the ile de la cite it had for defense a thick wall and for moat the bed of the Seine. The Petit Pont, replacing an ancient Roman bridge, was the earliest means of exit from the Cite to the left bank of the river and led the way to the […]

Paris – Notre Dame

IT was, then, into such an already thrilling environment of narrow streets, picturesque churches, and monastic dwellings that Maurice de Sully, fired with the ambition to build for posterity, introduced his unrecorded architect—who erected the oldest existing parts of the great cathedral. The plan which the bishop undertook to execute was scarcely inferior to what […]