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The extraordinary chapel
Louis IX had it built in the 13th century to house the Crown of Thorns bought in Venice.
It consists of two chapels, one above the other, connected with an internal staircase. I don’t know which of the two my niece and I admired more.
- Arts and Culture
the beautiful church of sainte-chapelle was built by louis IX in 1248. louis was extremely devout and an avid collector of religious relics. in 1239 he acquired the purported "Crown of Thorns" from the emperor of constantinople. in 1241 he acquired a fragment of the true cross as well as other relics. the cost of these relics was three times the cost of the construction of the chapel to house them. sainte-chapelle is considered one of the greatest architectural masterpieces of the western world. some must see sites of sainte-chapelle are the rose window, the apostle statues, and the upper and lower chapel.
- Religious Travel
- Historical Travel
The Holy Chapel
A chapel built in mid-13th century
On the Île de la Cité, enclosd within the Palais de Jus
Rayonnante Gothic style
The Chapel was built to house Christ's crown of thorns, the Image of Edessa and thirty other relics of Christ that the then-king Louis IX purchased shortly before from the rulers of Constantinople. The purchase price of the relics was over 3 times higher than the cost of the build
Most impressive features are the stained glass windows and the stonework surrounding them, as well as the rose windows added a couple of centuries later.
- Given the location within Palais de Jus, prepare to be heavily searched
- A combined ticket to Consiergerie and Sainte-Chapelle can save time queueing
- Historical Travel
Paris with kids
I would like to thank everyone for all the tips you gave me of what to do with kids in Paris. We had a great time there.
Specifically I would like to reinforce the following activities which my 3 year old daughter really enjoyed:
1) La cité des enfants - they have a special place for kids that age
2) La gallerie de l'évolution - she enjoyed seeing the big animals
3) Jardin de luxembourg - she loved the playground, very different from those in Brazil
4) Cirque diana moreno - she enjoyed a lot the show, specially the first part with the 10 tigers
She also enjoyed going on the carrousel near the Notre dame and seeing the Louvre pyramid.
I really recommend the hotel we stayed: Hotel du Levant http://www.hoteldulevant.com/ (near St Michel and St Germain). Really nice quarter, close to many restaurants which helped find food quickly for our kids!
Brings Tears to Your Eyes!
The line for Sainte-Chapelle is typically a long one. But, do not turn away. Stay in that line for 2 hours if you have to. The rewards are worth it. When you first enter Sainte-Chapelle, you go through the servants' chapel, which is a very pretty, very small chapel. This is only a taste of is what to come. You are then directed to walk up some narrow steps to get to the main chapel. Get ready to have your breath taken away! The main chapel is absolutely amazing! You'll stand there for several seconds totally awestruck by the sight. It's okay. Stand there and gawk--you paid for that honor.
The stained glass windows are magnificent. The walls are painted in jewel tones, which totally set off the beauty of the windows. The ceiling is painted blue with gold stars, and it's like you're looking into the night sky. Then there is the gorgeous rose window. I've yet to see such a beautiful combination anywhere else. My mom stood there with tears in her eyes when she first walked in. This place has such an unbelievable aura, or presence about it. Pictures just don't do this place justice!
- Arts and Culture
- Historical Travel
- Religious Travel
La Sainte-Chapelle was designed by Pierre de Montereau for King Louis IX (Saint Louis), and consecrated in 1248. This stands as one of the finest, most beautiful examples of Gothic architecture. The stained-glass windows are so incredible, they don't seem quite real. This is the perfect place to visit before or after Notre Dame.
- Historical Travel
This Gothic Catholic chapel was built in Paris during the Middle Ages (1245-1248) for Saint Louis, the king of France of that time, by his gifted architect, Pierre de Montereau. It was designed as a shrine for the Jesus Christ's thorn crown. The thorn crown was bought from Constantinople (Nowadays, Istambul in Turkey).
It's exterior architectural details, the 15 colorful stainglasses, accesories and the finensess in its ensemble made it an unequaled jewel of the XIIIth century.
The stories of the spires: The first spire of Sainte Chapelle, placed by Montereau, having crumbled with age was succeeded by a second, under Charles VI, made by Robert Fouchier. The second spire was consumed by fire and replaced by Louis XIII, in 1630. The third spire was sacrificed in the Revolution, and the present erection dates from the last general restoration of the chapel under Louis-Philippe. It is in the flowery style of the second half of the XVth century and recalls the design of Fouchier.
Windows in upper chapel-Vidrieras cap. alta
The stained glass windows are devoted to both New Testament and Old Testament passages and, in addition, they have the role of reinforcing the royal legitimity with scenes of King Solomon and King David near of the places where the Royal Family used to sat down. There are 1134 scenes and 720 of them are the original ones from the 13th century. One of the window in the apse is devoted to the relics history. The rose window comes from 15th century and its devoted to the Apocalypse. It has 9 metres of diameter.
Las vidrieras están dedicadas a pasajes tanto al Nuevo Testamento como al Antiguo Testamento y, además, tienen el papel de reforzar la legitimidad monárquica con escenas de los Reyes Salomón y David cerca de los lugares donde la Familia Real se sentaba. Hay 1134 escenas, de las cuales 720 son originales del siglo XIII. Una de las vidrieras del ábside se dedica a la historia de las reliquias. El rosetón es del siglo XV y se dedica al Apocalipsis. Tiene 9 metros de diámetro.
Upper chapel - Capilla alta
The upper chapel is the main part of the building and, for me, it's one of the most beautiful buildings in the whole Paris. This chapel was reserved for the Royal Family and the highest public servant in the Kingdom. There are no walls at all, but marvellous stained glass windows of 15,40 x 4,25 metres. I can give you an important piece of advice: visit it in a sunny day or, at least, in a bright one. To see the colorful windows in all its splendor really makes the difference of your visit.
La capilla alta es la parte principal del edificio y, para mí, es uno de los edificios más bonitos de todo París. Esta capilla estaba reservada para la Familia Real y para los altos funcionarios del Reino. No hay muros, sino maravillosas vidrieras de 15,40 x 4,25 metros. Puedo darte un importante consejo: visítala en un día soleado o, al menos en uno brillante. Ver las cooloridas vidrieras en todo su esplendor hace la verdadera diferencia en una visita.
Details lower chapel-Detalles capilla baja
As I explained in the previous tips, decoration is quite remarkable in this chapel, that's why I write one more tip to show you a bit more of it. Upper chapel is very spectarcular for its well-known stained glassed windows, but the lower chapel is a nice surprice of colourful walls and columns, bright medallions and a wonderful apse, where the altar used to be.
Unfortunatly this place is completly spoiled because of the cheese idea of putting a souvenir shop INSIDE this chapel. It seems an horrible idea for me and it shows a completly lack of consideration for this part of the building. I hope they will remove this stand from here in the near future. I don't show you photos of this here because I don't want to disturb the wonderful ensemble of the lower chapel with this stuff. You can see it my "Tourist traps" section.
Escribo otro consejo más para mostrar algo más del lugar. La capilla alta es muy espectacular con sus conocidas vidrieras, pero la capilla baja es una bonita sorpresa por sus coloridos muros y columnas, sus brillantes medallones y su precioso ábside, donde se encontraba el altar.
Desgraciadamente este lugar ha sido completamente desgraciado con la idea cutre de instalar una tienda de recuerdo DENTRO de la capilla. Me parece una idea horrible y muestra una absoluta falta de consideración con esta parte del edificio. Espero que la quiten de aquí lo antes posible.. No muestro fotos de esto aquí para no estropear la idea del conjunto de la baja capilla, pero lo puedes ver en mi sección de "Trampas para el turista".
The Holy Chapel - La Santa Capilla
The Sainte Chapelle (Holy Chapel) is placed inside the Palace de Justice (Court) and it's not clearly seen, unless you will notice it's tall spire from the main courtyard, behind the golden grill. This big spire is supposed to have a weight of 230 because of its plomb case.
The Sainte-Chapelle is the palatine chapel, was built in 1242 to house precious relics: Christ's crown of thorns, the Image of Edessa and thirty other relics of Christ that had been in the possession of Louis IX (Saint Louis) since August 1239.
La Sainte Chapelle (Santa Capilla) se encuentra dentro del Palacio de Justicia y no se ve claramente, salvo que te fijes en su alta aguja desde el patio principal, tras la reja dorada. Se estima que la gran aguja pesa unas 230 toneladas gracias a su revestimiento de plomo.
La Santa Capilla es la capilla del palacio real, construida en 1242 para acoger reliquias: la Corona de Espinas de Jesucristo, la Imagen de Edesa y otras treinta reliquias de Jesuscristo que estuvieron en posesión de Luis IX (San Luis) desde agosto de 1239.
Lower chapel - Capilla baja
You'll enter for the lower chapel, devoted to the Virgin. It's very colorful, in its walls, columns and ceiling. This chapel was in service for the Palace's employees. It has 6'60 metres high and it has 14 columns very well ornated. They were planned to stand the big weight of all the building, giving a light appearance to the upper chapel (the main one)
Se entra por la capilla baja, dedicada a la Virgen. Es muy colorida, en sus muros, columnas y techo. La capila se utilizaba para el personal del Palacio. Tiene 6'60 metros de altura y 14 columnas muy ornamentadas. Se plantearon para soportar el enorme peso de todo el edificio, dando así una apariencia ligera a la capilla superior (la principal)
Gate - Puerta
The gate ornaments, with the statue of the Holy Virgin, comes from the 19th century, because the original one was destroyed during the French Revolution. Unfortunatly this was a horrible period for such a wonderful building, as for other ones too. Much of the chapel as it appears today is a recreation, although nearly two-thirds of the windows are authentic. The steeple and baldachin were removed, the relics dispersed, and various reliquaries, were melted down. The Sainte-Chapelle was requisitioned as an archival depository in 1803. Two meters' worth of glass was removed to faciliate working light, and destroyed or loosed upon the market. Its well-documented restoration, completed under the direction of Eugène Viollet-le-Duc in 1855, was regarded as exemplary by contemporaries and is faithful to the original drawings and descriptions of the chapel that survive.
La decoración de la puerta, con la estatua de la Virgen, son del siglo XIX, ya que la original due destruida durante la Revolución Francesa. Desgraciadamente este fue un horrible período de tiempo para este magnífico edificio, como para otros muchos. La mayoría de la capilla es una recreación de lo que fue, aunque casi dos tercios de las vidrieras son auténticas. El baldaquino lo quitaron, las reliquias las dispersaron y varios relicarios fueron destruidos. La Sainte Chapelle se convirtió en depósito de archivos en 1803. Quitaron dos metros de vidrieras para dar más luz al interior y fueron destruidas o vendidas en el mercado. Su restauración, bien documentada, fue completada bajo la dirección de Eugène Viollet-le-Duc en 1855, siendo considerada ejemplar por sus contemporaneos, siguiendo dibujos originales y descripciones de la capilla que sobrevivieron a los ataques.
Main façade - Fachada principal
The façade is composed by two porticos, one for each floor. It's quite remarkable the rose window and the ornated small spires.
The ticket booth is next to the main façade. You're able to buy there a combi ticket for the Sainte Chapelle and the Conciergerie if you're planning to visit both monuments during the same day. The Sainte-Chapelle, which is no longer used as a place of worship, is regularly used as a concert hall, as well as for tourist visits. However, several times a year, religious ceremonies are organized there by the lawyers, in particular for Saint Yves' day, and also by the Catholic association of magistrates and civil servants of the Law Courts.
La fachada está compuesta por dos pórticos superpuestos, uno en cada planta. Son muy destacados el rosetón y los pequeños pináculos, muy ornamentados.
La taquilla está junto a la fachada. Puedes comprar una entrada combinada para acceder a la Sainte Chapelle y a la Conciergerie si estás pensando visitar ambos monumentos el mismo día. La Sainte-Chapelle, que ya no está destinada al culto, se utiliza normalmente como sala de conciertos, además de las visitas turísticas. Varias veces por año, sin embargo, los abogados organizan aquí ceremonias religiosas, sobre todo con ocasión de la fiesta de San Yves, y también las organizan la Asociación de magistrados y funcionarios católicos del Palacio.
Outside the chapel - Exterior de la capilla
Once you enter the Court of Justice to visit the Saint Chapelle you will join a small courtyard were the chapel is. It's actually the first time you're going to see the whole building. It has 36 metres long, 17 metres wide and 42,5 metres high. In fact there are two chapels inside in two differents floors, but we're going to see them in the next tips.
Una vez que entras en el Palacio de Justicia para visitar la Saint Chapelle pasarás a un pequeño patio, que es donde se encuentra la capilla. Verdaderamente esta será la primera vez en que veas el edificio completo. Tiene 36 metros de largo, 17 de ancho y 42,5 de alto. En realidad hay dos capillas dentro en dos plantas diferentes, pero las veremos en los siguientes tips.
Opening hours / Horarios de apertura
March to October / Marzo a octubre: 9:30 - 18:00
November to February / Noviembre a febrero: 9:00 - 17:00
Prices / Tarifas
Adults / Adultos: 7,50€
Children under 18 / Menores de 18: Free / Gratis
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