"Examine La Porte de la Vierge (left door)" Notre Dame de Paris Tip by hquittner

Notre Dame de Paris, Paris: 652 reviews and 1,336 photos

  Portal to the Virgin
by hquittner
  • Portal to the Virgin - Paris
      Portal to the Virgin
    by hquittner
  • Her Coronation - Paris
      Her Coronation
    by hquittner
  • Her Dormition - Paris
      Her Dormition
    by hquittner
  • The Trumeau:Madonna and Child - Paris
      The Trumeau:Madonna and Child
    by hquittner
  • St. Denis & his Head; Zodiacs on jamb - Paris
      St. Denis & his Head; Zodiacs on jamb
    by hquittner

Most first-time visitors to Paris are unfamiliar with Gothic architecture and sculpture and the devout religious population that they were directed toward long ago. We were in that number. Over 25 years ago with a Michelin Paris guide in hand, we approached the West facade of Notre Dame. It directed us to study the Portal to the Virgin Mary to our left. The crowds pushed on to the right door and entered but we stayed and examined our first Tympanum. Over 100 Romanesque and Gothic churches and tympani later we still do this compulsively. We have read widely on sculpture, architecture, Medieval History , painting and follow in the footsteps of Berenson, Lord Clark and Henry Adams (and laugh at Ruskin). We have found that Viollet-le-Duc anticipated the linkage technic of computers in assembling his encyclopedia of architecture.
Here the Virgin is crowned by an angel as her Son gives her a sceptre with his left hand (The Assumption), while below is a Dormition with Jesus and the Apostles, and below that a group of Kings look out. On the trumeau (center pier) is a statue of the Madonna and Child which has on its base figures depicting the eating of the apple. There is much more but at a first encounter the only other item we saw was St. Denis carrying his head (in the left embrasures) with an angel at each side. One can also glimpse another typical Gothic figuration on the door jamb, the signs of the Zodiac.

Address: Place du parvis de Notre Dame , 75004
Directions: Métro: Cité; RER: Châtelet-Les Halles, Saint Michel-Notre Dame
Phone: +33 1 42 34 56 10
Website: http://www.notredamedeparis.fr/-English-

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Nov 30, 2006
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