The Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekathedraal or Cathedral of our lady with its 123 meters hight tower still is the highest building in downtown Antwerp. Construction of this huge church started in 1352 and completion of the first stage took 200 years; even today the works on the Gothic style church are not finalized.
In 1533 the church was largely gutted by fire. The completion of the second tower was therefore delayed and in the end that tower was never built.
Between 1965 and 1993 a complete restoration was executed and the cathedral now is on the UNESCO World Heritage Sites list.
Visiting entrance fee: € 5,00 (Adult)
Mo-Fr: 10AM - 5PM
Sa: 10AM - 3PM
Su: 1PM - 4PM
The Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp is a Roman Catholic Cathedral in the Historic centre of the City.The Diocese of Antwerp was started in 1352 and although the first stage of construction was ended in 1521,has never been completed.In Gothic style,its architects were'Jan and Peter Appelmans'.It contains a number of significant works by the 'Baroque' painter'Peter Paul Rubens' as well as paintings from artists such as 'Otto van Veen','Jacob de Backer' and 'Marten de Voss'.Where the Cathedral now stands there was a small chapel of Our Lady from the 9th to the 12th century,which aquired the status of Parish Church in 1124.During the course of the twelfth century it was replaced by a larger Romanesque church,and in 1352 construction began of the Cathedral you see today.The Cathedral is on the list of World Heritage Sites.Maintenance of the structure costs 1.5 million Euros per year.
Entry fee:5 Euros.Open:weekdays-10am till 5pm,sat-10am till 3pm,sun-1pm till 4pm.
Our first stop in Antwerp was the cathedral, whose name means “Cathedral of our Lady”, where we looked at the gothic architecture. Begun in 1352, this is the largest Gothic cathedral in Belgium – the building alone takes up 2.5 acres. It was originally planned to have two spires, but the builders ran out of money and the second spire was never completed. The spire they did finish is 404 ft. tall.
Inside the cathedral, there is a seven aisled nave and a high vaulted ceiling. There are some wonderful paintings inside the cathedral as well, from local artist Peter Paul Rubens - Raising of the Cross and Descent from the Cross.
Because we were there on a Sunday morning, services were starting and the doorman was very particular about not letting tourists into the building. So, while I enjoyed seeing the architecture on the outside, I was unable to get inside (although a couple of my classmates did get past the guard). Seeing the inside will top my list when I return to this city.
This cathedral is magnificent. As the main Museum of fine Art is shut for 7 years, there is an exhibition of paintings in the Cathedral. This is a must do. The other thing I loved was the wonderful tunes that they play with the bells.
We arrived in a tourental wind and rain storm and how ironic we took refuge in a cathedral, this place has been doing just that for more than 800 years.... the reason to come to this gothic masterpiece is to see the 4 orginal Peter Paul Rubens masterpieces inside ... some of the fewof Rubens paintings that are not in musuems around the world... a small price of 4 euros for entrance fee. Once inside there is a self tour phaplets that are avaiable in English, Spanish and couple of more languages. Some parts are being renovated for future generations, but the main parts are still open. We spent about an hour and half here and saw everything without rushing. Just a reminder this is still and active place of worship...dress appropiately. HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT !!!!! Photo's are allowed just no flash !!!!
You have a nice view on the cathedral from the "Groenplaats" and the "Main Square". The constructions started during the 16th century and the city continued working on it. Inside you find a choir from the year 1415 and several paintings from Peter Paul Rubens. Among these are the two famous triptych paintings: "The Raising of the Cross" and "The Descent of the Cross". It is a pity you have to pay 5 euro entrance, but it is worth it. The cathedral is very beautiful and the paintings are priceless.
This stunning PP Rubens paintin is widely considered the absolute masterpiece of the 17th century Flemish painting. On the centre panel, Jesus's dead body is supported by John, while Mary holds him in her lap on the left panel. Old Simeon holds him in his arms on the right panel. An imposing St Christoper is depicted on the outside panels.
Unlike most of the paintings in the current exhibition at the cathedral, Christ on the Staw by Rubens is not an altarpiece but rather an epitaph, which was originally placed near the tombstone of a wealthy merchant, Jan Michielsen and his wife Mare Maes, who had been buried in the cathedral.
This painting refers to the ritual of burial. The straw is especially significant in the sense that all poor were buried in straw. The full ears of wheat refers to the bread, the bread that is Christ. This bread is broken during the Eucharist, in which Jesus's suffering and death, as well as his resurrection are commemorated. The hope of resurrection which is encapsulated in this painting is very fitting for an epitaph painting.
This lovely pulpit dates back to 1713 and is made of oak. She stands 7 meters tall and is 5.20 meters wide. Made by Michiel van der Voort, this pulpit stems from the former Saint Bernard's abbey in hemiksem, just south of Antwerp and was bought in 1803 by the church council. The base and support symbolises the dissemination of faith across the four countinents. A superb example of naturalistic Baroque.
The cathedral's history starts already in 1352 and it took 170 years to build this gothic masterpeace. It’s best feature I think is the 'onze-lieve-vrouwe-toren', strectching 123 meters height, she is majestic. The interior is dominated by 48 beautiful columns but the main tourist attraction are the presences of some Rubens masterpieces. Ensure that you do not forget to closely inspect the pulpit designed by Michiel van der Voort.
Beware that visits aren't free , and not allowed during religious ceremonies. entrance for 60+ is 3.00 euro and others are 5 euro. well worth the visit.
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