Chartres Cathedral is one of France's most famous buildings. It is made in a beautiful Gothic style. There are 173 stained glass windows and 2000 sculpted figures. There is a vast nave (central part of the church). The cathedral is pure ogival (gothic) style, and the porches are covered in magnificent sculptures from the middle of the 12th century.
The cathedral was the most valued building in the town, and the focus point of lots of activities and carnivals in the town, as well as a worship place for Catholic people. But, in the Middle Ages, the church functioned as a market place. Vegetables, fuel, and meat were sold in the south porch of the church, while textiles and other types of art were sold in the north part of the cathedral.
Windows of the Church
The stained glass windows are probably the most distinctive feature of Chartres Cathedral. Almost all of the 176 windows were filled with equally dense stained glass, creating a sort of dark but richly colored inside of the cathedral. The majority of the windows now visible at Chartres were made and installed between 1205 and 1240.
Only four lancets (windows) are left that survived the fire of 1195. Three of them are located beneath the rose in the west façade, and all three of these windows were originally made around 1145 but were restored in early 13th century and again in 19th century.
There is a very popular window showing the Virgin Mary and her child surrounded by adoring angels. Most of the windows are made up of around 25–30 individual panels. Many windows at Chartres include images of local tradesmen or laborers. There are three large rose windows and many gorgeous angels in stained glass.
Second fire of Chartres Cathedral
Friday, June 10th 1194 at 8pm
16 Cloître Notre Dame
Another disaster happened to the church. A fire erupted one night at the cathedral, burning the whole church down. The only parts that survived the horrible event were the crypt and the west front. The reconstruction began shortly after 1194.
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