Dictionary of Art and Artists



 

 


History of

Architecture and Sculpture

 
 

 

 
 

 
 

CONTENTS:

 
 

PART ONE
THE ANCIENT WORLD
PREHISTORIC ART
EGYPTIAN ART

ANCIENT NEAR EASTERN ART
AEGEAN ART
GREEK ART
ETRUSCAN ART
ROMAN ART
EARLY CHRISTIAN AND BYZANTINE ART

PART TWO
THE MIDDLE AGES
EARLY MEDIEVAL ART
ROMANESQUE ART
GOTHIC ART

PART THREE
THE RENAISSANCE THROUGH THE ROCOCO
LATE GOTHIC
THE EARLY RENAISSANCE IN ITALY
THE HIGH RENAISSANCE IN ITALY
MANNERISM AND OTHER TRENDS
THE RENAISSANCE IN THE NORTH
THE BAROQUE IN ITALY AND SPAIN
THE BAROQUE IN FLANDERS AND HOLLAND
THE BAROQUE
THE ROCOCO

PART FOUR
THE MODERN WORLD
NEOCLASSICISM AND ROMANTICISM
REALISM AND IMPRESSIONISM
POST-IMPRESSIONISM, SYMBOLISM, AND ART NOUVEAU

PART FIVE
TWENTIETH-CENTURY
TWENTIETH-CENTURY SCULPTURE
TWENTIETH-CENTURY ARCHITECTURE


INDEX
FIGURES
 

 
 

 
 

CHAPTER THREE
 

GOTHIC ART
 

ARCHITECTURE - Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

SCULPTURE - Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

STAINED GLASS - Part 1, 2

PAINTING - Part 1, 2

 
 


ARCHITECTURE
 


France    



see also:
Architecture in France




STRASBOURG CATHEDRAL



Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-Strasbourg
 

 


Strasbourg Cathedral


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 

Strasbourg Cathedral or the Cathedral of Our Lady of Strasbourg (French: Cathédrale Notre-Dame-de-Strasbourg, German: Liebfrauenmünster zu Straßburg) is a Roman Catholic cathedral in Strasbourg, France. Although considerable parts of it are still in Romanesque architecture, it is widely considered to be among the finest examples of high, or late, Gothic architecture. Erwin von Steinbach is credited for major contributions from 1277 to his death in 1318.

At 142 metres, it was the world's tallest building from 1647 to 1874, when it was surpassed by St. Nikolai's Church, Hamburg. Today it is the sixth-tallest church in the world.

Described by Victor Hugo as a "gigantic and delicate marvel", and by Goethe as a "sublimely towering, wide-spreading tree of God", the cathedral is visible far across the plains of Alsace and can be seen from as far off as the Vosges Mountains or the Black Forest on the other side of the Rhine. Sandstone from the Vosges used in construction gives the cathedral its characteristic pink hue.



Strasbourg Cathedral

 

Previous buildings on the site
The site of the Strasbourg cathedral was used for several successive religious buildings, starting from the Argentoratum period (when a Roman sanctuary occupied the site) up to the building that is there today.

It is known that a cathedral was erected by the bishop Saint Arbogast of the Strasbourg diocese at the end of the seventh century, on the base of a temple dedicated to the Virgin Mary, but nothing remains of it today. Strasbourg's previous cathedral, of which remains dating back to the to the late 4th century or early 5th century were unearthed in 1948 and 1956, was situated at the site of the current Église Saint-Étienne.

In the eighth century, the first cathedral was replaced by a more important building that would be completed under the reign of Charlemagne. Bishop Remigius von Straßburg (also known as Rémi) wished to be buried in the crypt, according to his will dated 778. It was certainly in this building that the Oaths of Strasbourg were pronounced in 842. Excavations carried out recently reveal that this Carolingian cathedral had three naves and three apses. A poem described this cathedral decorated with gold and precious stones by the bishop Ratho (also Ratald or Rathold). The basilica caught fire on multiple occasions, in 873, 1002, and 1007.

In 1015, bishop Werner von Habsburg laid the first stone of a new cathedral on the ruins of the Carolingian basilica. He then constructed a cathedral in the Romanesque style of architecture. That cathedral burned to the ground in 1176 because at that time the naves were covered with a wooden framework.

After that disaster, bishop Heinrich von Hasenburg decided to construct a new cathedral, to be more beautiful than that of Basel, which was just being finished. Construction of the new cathedral began on the foundations of the preceding structure, and did not end until centuries later. Werner's cathedral's crypt, which had not burned, was kept and expanded westwards.
 

Construction of the cathedral (11761439)
The construction began with the quire and the north transept in a Romanesque style, reminiscent of and actually inspired by the Imperial Cathedrals in its monumentality and height. But in 1225, a team coming from Chartres revolutionized the construction by suggesting a Gothic architecture style. The parts of the nave that had already been begun in Romanesque style were torn down and in order to find money to finish the nave, the Chapter resorted to Indulgences in 1253. The money was kept by the Œuvre Notre-Dame, which also hired architects and stone workers. The influence of the Chartres masters was also felt in the sculptures and statues: the "Pillar of Angels" (Pilier des anges), a representation of the Last Judgment on a pillar in the southern transept, facing the Astronomical clock, owes to their expressive style.

Like the city of Strasbourg, the cathedral connects Münster-German and French cultural influences, while the eastern structures, e.g. the choir and south portal, still have very Romanesque features, with more emphasis placed on walls than on windows.

Above all, the famous west front, decorated with thousands of figures, is a masterpiece of the Gothic era. The tower is one of the first to rely substantially on craftsmanship, with the final appearance being one with a high degree of linearity captured in stone. While previous façades were certainly drawn prior to construction, Strasbourg has one of the earliest façades whose construction is inconceivable without prior drawing. Strasbourg and Cologne Cathedral together represent some of the earliest uses of architectural drawing. The work of Professor Robert O. Bork of the University of Iowa suggests that the design of the Strasbourg facade, while seeming almost random in its complexity, can be constructed using a series of rotated octagons.

The north tower, completed in 1439, was the world's tallest building from 1647 (when the spire of St. Mary's church, Stralsund burnt down) until 1874 (when the tower of St. Nikolai's Church in Hamburg was completed). The planned south tower was never built and as a result, with its characteristic asymmetrical form, the Strasbourg cathedral is now the premier landmark of Alsace. One can see 30 kilometers from the observation level, which provides a view of the Rhine banks from the Vosges all the way to the Black Forest. The octagonal tower as it can be seen is the combined work of architects Ulrich Ensingen (shaft) and Johannes Hültz of Cologne (top). Ensingen worked on the Cathedral from 1399 to 1419, and Hültz from 1419 to 1439.

In 1505, architect Jakob von Landshut and sculptor Hans von Aachen finished rebuilding the Saint-Lawrence portal (Portail Saint-Laurent) outside the northern transept in a markedly post-Gothic, early-Renaissance style. As with the other portals of the Cathedral, most of the statues now to be seen in situ are copies, the originals having been moved to the Musée de lŒuvre Notre-Dame.
 

 




West facade of the Cathedral Notre-Dame de Strasbourg




West facade of the Cathedral Notre-Dame de Strasbourg (detail)




West facade of the Cathedral Notre-Dame de Strasbourg (detail)




West facade (frontispiece) of the cathedral Notre-Dame de Strasbourg




West facade of the Cathedral Notre-Dame de Strasbourg (detail)




Statues of the right side of the central door of the western portal of Strasbourg cathedral.




Statues of the left side of the central door of the western portal of Strasbourg cathedral.




Strasbourg Cathedral. Statues.
Three wise virgins appear with Christ on Strasbourg Cathedral.




Strasbourg Cathedral. Interior




Vitraux de la rosace de la cathédrale Notre-Dame de Strasbourg.

 
 

Discuss Art

Please note: site admin does not answer any questions. This is our readers discussion only.

 
| privacy