Transbordeur bridges in France and the world 2: focus on Portugalete, Chicago,
When its construction was started in 1170, the building that became the Cathedral Notre Dame de Lausanne was an alien apparition, like a meteorite fallen from the sky. At that time, outside the “native” Gothic zone of Ile-de-France and Picardy in France, and Anglo-Norman England, there was no similar building. And so the clerestory of Lausanne cathedral has clear similarities to the choir at Canterbury, both following French Gothic design. The style of cathedral is for the most part described as “primitive Burgundian Gothic”. Regarded as the most beautiful Gothic cathedral in Switzerland, this building has arguably one of the most impressive rose windows in the world.
During the Middle Ages, the cathedral was a place of pilgrimage , with about seventy thousand people visiting each year. At this time, the population of the city of Lausanne was only about seven thousand.
The rose window [1231–35] in the south facade is considered to be one of the most important roses in Europe, together with those at Notre Dame in Paris and at Chartres. The Lausanne South Rose was made by a wandering artist from Picardy, Pierre d’Arras, and is related in style and iconography to that of the Laon workshop.
In medieval times, large rose windows were often a representation of the universe. Thus, Lausanne’s large rose contains images representing the four seasons, four elements, four winds, four rivers of paradise, as well as the twelve labours of the months and the signs of the zodiac. [The rose was restored in 1894-98 by E. Hosch. Missing panels were replaced, while others, such as the centre, were improvised.]
As well as the medieval rose, Lausanne cathedral also holds twentieth-century glass that combines both medieval and Art Nouveau - Jugendstil - motifs. The glass was executed during the inter-war years by French Swiss glass artists Marcel Poncet, Louis Rivier and François de Ribaupierre, Alexandre Cingria, Charles Clément and Edmond Bille.
Twentieth-century stained glass
When the 1955 organ developed ‘breathing’ problems, the chosen builders, Massachusetts-based C.B. Fisk, and Italian designer Giugiaro, made the new 7,000-pipe, 100-stop organ. Giugiaro, who designs Lamborghini and other cars, modelled the body of the organ on an angel floating floating on a cloud of light.
Visitors can climb the 225 steps to the observation deck of one of the two towers, overlooking the city of Lausanne and with views across Lake Geneva. About half a million people visit the Cathedral de Notre Dame every year.
Regular concerts are held in the cathedral to which the general public is welcome.
Lausanne Cathedral is now the only city in Europe to follow a tradition started in 1405, of a night watch. This was very important in earlier times, when most buildings were made of wood, to prevent the all-too-common threat of devastating fires. The watchman walks up to the top of the tower, every hour on the hour from 22:000 to 02:00 (10pm to 2am). At the tower top, he calls out to the four points of the compass: C‘est le guet; il a sonné l’heure (“This is the night watch; the hour has struck”). Since 2002, this task has been performed by Renato Häusler.
Each year, on December 31 at midnight, to mark the transition to the new year, a display of sounds, light and smoke gives the impression that the tower caught fire.
Nowadays, Protestant services are held on Sundays at 10:00 and 20:00, the cathedral being closed to non-worshipping visitors during these periods. From time to time, Catholic services are held.
cathedrals – introduction: reading stained glass
gothic cathedral and church construction
cathedrals, an illustrated glossary
cathedrals, an illustrated glossary Chartres - wonder of the world
history of ugly stained glass: Auch, Bazas, Dreux
Auch cathedral choir and stalls
Rouen and Monet
Dax and church iconography photographs, Dax
Bazas - iconography and architectural styles
Poitiers, neglected masterpiece photographs, Poitiers / photos 2
Angers, heart of the Angevin Empire photographs, Angers
Laon, the midst of the gothic transition, with added oxen photographs, Laon
Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Lyon
Notre Dame of Lausanne
Senlis - how a typical cathedral changes through the ages
Saint-Bertrand-de-Comminges - the cathedral of the Pyrenees
| Le Mans and Bourges cathedrals - medieval space technology
Lausanne rose window - photo-analysis
cathedrals in Lorraine - the Three Bishoprics
cathedral giants - Amiens and Beauvais
Clermont-Ferrand and Agde - from volcanoes to cathedrals
Germans in France - Arras cathedral
Germans in France - Reims cathedral
Germans in France - St. Quentin cathedral
Germans in France - Noyon cathedral
Germans in France - Cambrai cathedral
Germans in France - Soissons cathedral
cathedral plans, and facts
using metal in gothic cathedral construction
cathedral labyrinths and mazes in France
cathedrals and cloisters of France by Elise Whitlock Rose
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© abelard, 2009, 04 january
the address for this document is http://www.abelard.org/france/cathedrals7_lausanne.php