Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Sainte Chapelle

Went to Paris over the weekend and managed to get this upshot of the stained glass at Sainte Chapelle. Having visited this little medieval gem, I never cease to be amazed at the beauty and majesty of the place - it really is one of the most remarkable pieces of medieval architecture in the world.

It was built by Louis IX in the 1240's to house the Crown of Thorns and he used the most technically advanced design of his period. There are over 1000 religious scenes depicted on the stained glass.

The chapel is most famous for its glass, but don't be tempted to go rushing through the ground floor chapel which was intended for lesser mortals. If you are English and wonder what our great Cathedral's looked like in medieval times - the ground floor chapel will reveal all. All its surfaces including stone vaulting are painted in gaudy colours.

Sainte Chapelle is one of Paris's best kept secrets - it is a matter of minutes away from its larger cousin Notre Dame, which in my opinion, pales into insignificance next to the glorious light show on offer from the upper floor of Sainte Chapelle.

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