When the fire broke out, Notre-Dame was undergoing restoration work and was covered with scaffolding. Miraculously, this did not collapse in the 800 Celsius heat, though many of the 50,000 poles melted, making dismantling the structure extremely difficult and perilous for the vaults underneath.
A bell of Notre Dame, when they were in the place before the fire
It is said that Victor Hugo wrote Notre-Dame de Paris in 1831 almost as an ode to the medieval Catholic cathedral in an effort to draw attention to the value of the Gothic architecture.
A rooftop view with gargoyles on the left and other statuary, circa 1860
Notre Dame had always seemed eternal, and the medieval builders certainly thought it would last until the Day of Judgment; but suddenly we saw that it could be destroyed.
For the estimated 13 million visitors that visit the cathedral each year, many are anxious to know when they will once more be allowed to reenter one of the world’s most iconic churches.
There were 460 tons of lead tiles covering the cathedral’s roof and spire, all of which melted, and tiny particles of some of that lead mixed with the plume of smoke that drifted over Paris. The lead-laced dust settled on buildings, squares, parks, and plazas. It also is likely to have made its way through open windows, air-conditioning ducts and other building ventilation systems.
The crown of thorns was saved from the fire thanks to the quick work of Paris firefighters. Perhaps the same crown forced over the head of Christ during the crucifixion, although probably not, is now on display at the Louvre museum.
However the tapestry has been rarely seen. It had been stored in two parts in trunks which protected it from the molten lead falling from the roof, but the tapestry had soaked up huge amounts of water, which swelled its weight to three tonnes from just one tonne.
After extensive work the public will have a chance to see the tapestry during an open house at the Mobilier National during the European Heritage Days on 21-22 September.
So far, the new current UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has lost six votes in the House of Parliament. In about 10 years in power, Margaret Thatcher only lost four. This feels like another opening for John Oliver…
And none of them mention Notre Dame even once!
Oh and if you didn’t catch John Oliver’s original assessment of Boris, here it is:
John Oliver’s assessment of Boris Johnson
Greta Thunberg said “the world watched with despair and enormous sorrow how the Notre Dame burnt in Paris. Some buildings are more than just buildings. But the Notre Dame will be rebuilt. I hope that its foundations are strong. I hope that our foundations are even stronger, but I fear they are not.”
In order to give you a glimpse into Notre Dame Cathedral five months after the fire, the article has compiled list of what we’ve learned so far. From news of potentially poisonous pollution to briefings on the church’s resident bees, we hope to shed some light on some of the story’s most interesting updates.