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The Cathedral of Monaco
The Monaco Cathedral is not only quite beautiful but is notable as the final resting place of many of the Grimaldi Princes but also that of Prince Rainier and Princess Grace, the former Grace Kelly. The dazzling white facade features grand Roman-Byzantine architectural details which I found very beautiful. A bank of wide steps leads up to the main, arched entrance which is flanked by 2 smaller arches.
The interior enjoys a good deal of natural light but well-placed interior lighting does a splendid job of softly bathing the more recessed portions of the church, especially over the granite stone of Princess Grace's grave: engraved "Gratia Patricia." Also, a quiet walk from the cathedral's entrance reveals not only the final resting places of other Grimaldi princes and important persons, but also beautiful side altars, and religious works of art. From the the front of the cathedral, gaze back at the rose window. The cathedral celebrates special masses on January 27th each year honoring St. Devote, the Patron Saint of Monaco.
The cathedral, which is dedicated to St. Nicholas, was consecrated in 1875, and is built on the spot of the first parish church built in Monaco during the 13th century. The Cathedral houses an altar piece by French painter, Louis Brea, and an altar and episcopal throne of white Carrara marble. I found the Cathedral beautiful in an understated manner.
From September through June, "Les Petits Chanteurs de Monaco" sing Mass every Sunday. The Cathedral is open virtually every day from 8:30 am to 6:45pm. If I remember correctly, there was a kind, older nun in the church who collected donations for some organization. She was very appreciative of any donation!
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This Cathedral in Monaco is the church that houses to bodies of deceased Princes. It is also the site of many a royal wedding, including the marriage of Prince Ranier to Princess Grace - and their daughters failed marriages.
Certainly an item on the list not to miss!
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Built in 1875 using white stone from La Turbie, the present-day Cathedral stands on the site of a 13th century church dedicated to Saint Nicolas and houses the tombs of the former Princes of Monaco. It is also the final resting placeof Monaco's much loved Princess Grace.
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