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Gothic Spaceship

Stairway, Chartres Cathedral
Originally uploaded by Debbie G.

To the glory of God. And how!

Today I went to Chartres. The cathedral at Chartres has been on my inner "life list" of places to go ever since I first saw pictures of it in "History of Art 120" in first year University. And it was worth waiting all this time for.


That's not to say that other cathedrals I have seen pale by comparison - no, Salisbury and Ely take a lot of beating, but it's not a competition. Each of these in its own way has that unearthly "something" that comes from the centuries of worship that have taken place in them, the wondrousness of their design, and the sheer impossibility that such creations should have been built without the use of modern tools or equipment.

I enjoyed wandering the lower part of Chartres the city, too (and I use the word "city" in the English manner of being anywhere that has a cathedral, not because it's a particularly big place). There are narrow streets and half-timbered houses and nooks and crannies.

The part closer to the train station had a slightly edgy feel to it - curious for a such a place.

You must be tired of hearing me talk about food, but I had another marvelous lunch there: fish with vegetables and rice (and, of course, some white wine).

Where shall I go tomorrow?


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 16th, 2007 10:43 pm (UTC)
I adore Chartres. It's my second-favourite cathedral in the world (Durham wins of course - just because.) Did you take the English-language guided tour? Malcolm Miller, who has been doing them most of my lifetime is just wonderful - incredibly charismatic as well as knowledgeable. Even without him, though, the place is a treasure chest. I'm glad you went there.
May. 17th, 2007 07:03 am (UTC)
I don't really have the patience for tours. I might like them if I'm somewhere that I know absolutely nothing about, but I know a fair bit about Chartres, and what to look for. I like solitude for contemplation and the ability to stay where I'm interested and leave when I'm not.
May. 17th, 2007 04:19 pm (UTC)
I normally avoid tours too - but this guy is different - he's the world leading authority on Chartres cathedral and a superb communicator.
May. 17th, 2007 06:06 pm (UTC)
well (shrugs). Maybe next time :)
May. 17th, 2007 06:05 am (UTC)
Yay! Glad you made it there. How about St. Denis for tomorrow. Sort of a pilgrimage :-) Or Sacre-Coeur. The view from the steps of Sacre-Coeur is amazing on a clear day.
May. 17th, 2007 07:05 am (UTC)
Sacre-Coeur and Montmartre as a "whole" are definitely on my list - but not today.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )


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