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Stained Glass Church In Paris

More Interesting Facts About Sainte

Paris, France: Sainte-Chapelle’s Dazzling Interior
  • Sainte-Chapelle was built during the Rayonnant phase of Gothic architecture, a period characterized by refined decoration, large windows, and spatial unity. The chapel has one of the worlds most extensive 13th-century stained glass collections and is considered among the highest achievements of Rayonnant Gothic architecture.
  • Archives dont name the designer-builder responsible for the chapels construction, but its believed the design was inspired by Charlemagnes royal chapel at his palace in Aix-en-Chapelle .
  • The current spire is the fifth to be built at Sainte-Chapelle since the 13th century.
  • During the revolution, the chapel was turned into a storehouse for grain.
  • During World War II, the stained glass was removed and placed into storage for safety.
  • Sainte-Chapelle was secularized after the French Revolution and was classified as a historical monument in 1862.

The Portal And Tympanum

Another innovative feature of the French Gothic cathedral was the design of the or entry, which by long Christian tradition faced west. The had a triple portal, decorated with columns in the form of statues of apostles and saints around the doorways, and biblical scenes crowded with statuary over the doorways. This triple portal was adopted by all the major cathedrals. A over the portal, crowded with sculptural figures illustrating a biblical story became a feature of Gothic cathedrals. Following the example of Amiens, the tympanum over the central portal traditionally depicted the , the right portal showed the coronation of the Virgin Mary, and the left portal showed the lives of saints who were important in the diocese.

Facts About Sainte Chapelle In Paris

The Sainte Chapelle in Paris was built in the mid 13th century by King Louis IX , at the heart of the Royal Residence, the Palais de la Cité. It was built to house the relics of the Passion of Christ and served as the private chapel of the Royal Family.

Built in gothic style, this Chapel has a particular design in two different stages: the lower level was used by the staff of the Royal Palace while the upper level was used by the Royal Family and their guests.

The Upper Chapel is adorned with a unique collection of stained glass windows. The Sainte Chapelle windows consist of 15 panels and a large rose window. The panels tell the story of the Bible, and how the relics that were housed there came to Paris.

King Louis IX bought the saint relics to the Emperor Baudouin II of Constantinople. Originally there were 22 relics, being the Crown of Thorns the most important.

The Crown of Thorns was bought for 135,000 livres tournois about half of the annual income of the royal domain at that time while the construction of the Sainte Chapelle cost about 40,000 livres tournois, three times less than the Crown of Thorns.

There are other Sainte Chapelles in France but the Sainte Chapelle in Paris was the first one. To be considered as Sainte Chapelle it needs to follow some criteria:

  • Have the same proportions as the Sainte Chapelle in Paris, but not necessarily its dimensions
  • Host at least one relic of the Passion of Christ

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Meet Our Insider: Christopher Wride

First of all, who are you and why do you know the Sainte-Chapelle so well?

Definitely! So how long have you worked at the Sainte-Chapelle?

I started in July 1995, so that makes it 25 years. The majority of my work is based in the Conciergerie of the Palace of Justice where we present major temporary exhibitions, host corporate events, official dinners, and fashion shows.

So, whats kept you in your role with the Sainte-Chapelle for 25 years?

I think the most important aspect of the role for me is being able to work in such emblematic Parisian monuments. I never tire of visiting the Sainte-Chapelle and I am always amazed by the beauty of the upper chapel.

Famous Churches In Paris You Should Visit

Pin by ì?ì¤ ì? on ì?ë³µë in 2020

Here is a list of the most famous churches in Paris that are well known for their architecture, magnificent history and attract great tourist footfall.

Paris is one of the most famous tourist spots globally and for good reason. Its historical landmarks, museums, cute cafes and restaurants, history, culture, and famous buildings, and among those are its churches and cathedrals.

Long before the country became secular, religion was at the forefront which led to the construction of a number of churches.

In fact, there are more than 200 churches in Paris alone and some of them deserve to be on your itinerary when you visit the city.

Saint-Eustache church

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These historic Parisian churches are architectural wonders built in various styles, from Gothic to Baroque masterpieces. So whether youre after old-world charm or modern flair, there will surely be something that will satisfy your taste.

Most of these famous churches in Paris host many beautiful works of art and are decorated with intricate sculptures, stained glasses, and gargoyles.

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The Dazzling Stained Glass Windows Of Sainte

by HannahLast Updated: July 28th, 2021 | Published: July 6th, 2017

Nothing can truly describe the feeling you get when you first set foot in Sainte-Chapelle, a small royal chapel just a short walk from Notre Dame. It is arguably the finest example of High-Gothic or Rayonnant architecture in the world, and it is well worth a visit when you’re in Paris.

When you first enter the dark, moody and low-ceilinged lower level after having waited in the painfully slow security line for way too long, you think: OK, this is cool, I guess, but nothing can prepare you for what lies above in the upper chapel.

As you ascend a narrow stone spiral staircase, you may start to feel a hint of claustrophobia, but that suffering won’t last for long, because before you know it, the ceiling opens up into the most brilliant display of color and light it’s like walking into a life-size kaleidoscope!

Best Time To Visit Sainte Chapelles Stained Glass Windows To Avoid The Crowds

Sunset is the most crowded time to visit Sainte Chapelle so if you are not that interested in photography avoid sunset.

Try to visit Sainte Chapelle first thing in the morning when it is not crowded yet and you can explore the Chapel in peace.

If possible, choose a sunny day for visiting Sainte Chapelle. Cloudy days are not ideal but in these days all the windows are evenly lit. When the sun is out then, at best, half are lit.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the Sainte Chapelle has reduced the number of visitors inside. We strongly recommend buying your skip the line tickets online and well in advance.

TIP: Visit Sainte Chapelle + the Conciergerie with this skip-the-line combo ticketand save time and money!

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Interior Of The Sainte

The Sainte-Chapelle is considered among the greatest Gothic masterpieces of Christendom with the richest decoration found inside. The shrine is famous for housing an exceptional collection of 13th-century stained glass.

The Sainte-Chapelle consists of two superimposed sanctuaries: the Lower Chapel and the Upper Chapel.

This was the place of worship for the palace staff and the Kings household.

The nave has four bays and underlined ribs with red stripes. The vaults are decorated with golden fleur-de-lys, the royal symbol.

Best Time To Visit Sainte Chapelles Stained Glass Windows For Photography

Restoring Notre-Dame Cathedral: Specialists tackle famous stained-glass windows

Flash photography in the Sainte Chapelle is prohibited so natural lighting is paramount.

The best time to visit Sainte Chapelle in Paris to capture the Sainte Chapelles Stained Glass windows in all their glory is during sunset . In summertime sunset timing is around 9.30 pm whilst in wintertime is around 4 pm.

When the sun is overhead, the rays dont enter at an angle so it is not a good time for photography.

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History Of The Monument

A gem of Gothic style. Built in seven years, an impressive feat, the Sainte Chapelle was intended to house precious Christian relics, including Christ’s crown of thorns, acquired by Saint Louis.

Religious and political influence. Having these sacred relics in his possession made the already powerful monarch head of western Christianity.

Stunning stained glass. Arranged across 15 windows, each 15 metres high, the stained glass panes depict 1,113 scenes from the Old and New Testaments recounting the history of the world until the arrival of the relics in Paris.

Continue your visit to the Conciergerie, a unique historical site alongside the Sainte-Chapelle in the Palais de la Cité, once a revolutionary tribunal and prison where Marie-Antoinette was held.

Do You Have To Book Your Ticket In Advance

You must book your ticket online and reserve a time slot for your visit as no ticket is sold on-site.

Full rate ticket costs 11,50.

Free access:

  • disabled people and their companion

Good to know: from November 1 to March 31, the Sainte-Chapelle is free for everyone every first Sunday of each month. However, we recommend you to avoid it because it is usually very crowded.

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Final Thoughts On The Famous Churches And Cathedrals In Paris

The city is home to some of the most beautiful and iconic cathedrals and churches in the world. So, make sure to visit a few of these Parisian cathedrals while in the city.

From Notre Dame to Sacré Coeur, these places of worship are must-see destinations for travelers interested in history and architecture.

So what are you waiting for? Make your way to one of these famous churches in Paris today and explore some of Christianitys most impressive feats of structure and design.

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Check out these posts to help you plan your trip to Paris

Interesting Facts About Sainte

gorgeous stained glass // paris, france

Even though the Sainte-Chapelle in Paris is a lesser known monument, the chapel welcomes over 900,000 visitors per year. What do all of these tourists want to see? The stunning stained glass windows, of course!

The Sainte-Chapelle is known around the world for its collection of 15 stained glass windows that are 15 meters tall. They tell the story of the Bible, and how the relics that were housed there came to Paris. And, thats not all.

Keep reading for 5 interesting facts about Sainte-Chapelles stained glass windows!

Practical Information
Entry fee: 10 euros
Opening hours: Open every day. January 2-March 31 9am-5pm, April 1-September 30 9am-7pm, October 1-December 31 9am-5pm
Address: 10 boulevard du Palais 75001 Paris
Metro: Cité

1. The Sainte-Chapelle has one of the most extensive collection of 13th century stained glass in the world

The stained glass windows in the Sainte-Chapelle by tmal pixabay

The Sainte-Chapelle was constructed in 1242, and was commissioned by the French king at the time, King Louis IX. He was an extremely religious king. He fought in 2 of the Crusades, had a large collection of religious relics that he had picked up along the way, and was eventually canonized as a saint after his death.

All 15 of the windows in the Sainte-Chapelle are from the 13th century, and in fact, the chapel boasts the most extensive collection of stained glass from this century in the world! There is over 600m2 of glass in the chapel.

  • The Passion of Christ
  • Bookstore

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    Why Was It Built

    Built in the 13th century over a shockingly short period of only 7 years, Sainte-Chapelle was constructed to house some of the most precious Christian relics, including the Crown of Thorns worn by Jesus Christ as he was crucified. It was commissioned by Louis IX and constructed as part of his royal palace, now the Palais de Justice. At that time, a building like this, with such revered objects inside, demonstrated the immense power and wealth of France to the rest of Europe. It highlighted Paris as a major destination for Christian pilgrims, and underscored its already dominant role in the dissemination of the Gothic style throughout Europe. Art History textbooks today still cite France as being the originator of the style.

    Best Time To Visit Sainte Chapelles Stained Glass Windows

    GOOD TO KNOW. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the visitor capacity is reduced and you are strongly encouraged to book your tickets online, well in advance, with a specific date and time slot. Tickets cannot be purchased on-site at Sainte Chapelle. You can only buy tickets online or on-site at the Conciergerie, located next to the Sainte Chapelle.

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    Sainte Clotilde Basilica 7th Arrondissement

    Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday

    The Basilica of Saint Clotilde is a 19th-century Neo-Gothic church located in the 7th Arrondissement.

    Its nave is beautifully elevated, with three tiers of pointed arcades, windowless triforium, and arched stained-glass windows.

    Despite the fact that the churchs interior is what you may have seen in other Parisian churches, it is well lit owing to the large windows.

    But what sets it apart is its twin spires and imposing Gothic facade which make it almost unbelievable that it was built only a century ago.

    This is a place where youll want to go again and again as there are various architectural spots to ponder upon.

    You Can See A Show Right In The Chapel

    Sainte-Chapelle: Famous for Its Stunning Stained Glass

    Sainte-Chapelle hosts an annual concert series where the public is invited to attend. While the music is incredible, to be sure, whats really great about these concerts is the experience of watching the musicians perform in such a gilded and glittering setting. The tall stained glass windows rise behind the artists as their music pours out its a multisensory experience you need to add to your Paris bucket list if youre a fan of classical music.

    You can purchase tickets at their on-site ticket office during the monuments regular business hours.

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    Final Thoughts About Visiting Sainte

    Ive visited a lot of churches on my travels and very few stood out the way Sainte-Chapelle did. Long after my visit, I could still vividly picture the inside of the upper chapel and its glittering stained glass windows. In addition to Notre-Dame, Sainte-Chapelle is one church you should not miss out on visiting if its your first time in Paris.

    Head To Some Of Frances Most Amazing Churches For A Multi


    If you havent seen this jewel box of a chapel, you havent lived. Built by Saint Louis in the 13th century to house his collection of Passion relics , this Gothic royal chapel sits on the Île de la Cité in the heart of Paris. Its nave and apse are encased in a delicate filigree of 15 towering stained glass windows among the finest in the world.


    This Roman Catholic cathedral features the largest expanse of ancient stained glass in any single building. The windows date from the 14th and 16th centuries, with modern additions made by the artist Marc Chagall, showing Old Testament stories. Having celebrated its 800th birthday in 2020, this architectural icon is one of the tallest gothic buildings in Europe. Not to be missed!


    Built between 1194 and 1250, this medieval Catholic cathedral is notable for having almost all of its original 12th-century stained glasswork intact. In all it features 176 windows filled with densely coloured glass. Did you know that this iconic cathedral recently underwent a complete restoration? Read our in-depth article here.

    From France Today magazine

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    Breathtaking Stained Glass At Sainte

    La Conciergerie | Website

    Sainte-Chappelle is one of those places that has to be seen to be believed. I’d heard that it was a 13th-century gothic church with unbelievably beautiful stained glass windows, and I thought, sounds great, but I’ve seen a ton of gothic churches with unbelievably beautiful stained glass windows all over Europe. Heck, I’ve seen a ton of them all over Paris. But, man-oh-man, Sainte-Chappelle is something else something really special. I promise you, these pics don’t do it justice at all, and I’ve honestly never seen any that have. You just have to see it for yourself.

    Sainte-Chappelle is much smaller than the big gothic cathedrals and basilicas you’ll find around Paris, but the entire upper level is covered with tall stained glass windows all the way around, and the colors and decor and ambiance of the place are breathtaking. I’ve been there three times with various friends visiting me in Paris, and I always look forward to the next time I’ll have occasion to go.

    This Is What You Came For: Sainte

    Pin by Stardust on Architecture

    Sainte-Chapelles stained glass windows are what bring a lot of people to visit the chapel. What exactly do they depict?

    The windows of the upper chapel depict scenes from both the Old and New Testaments of the Christian bible. They start with Genesis, the creation of Earth and the heavens, Adam and Eve, and as they continue throughout the chapel, they depict the life, death, and the resurrection of Christ. It culminates in the Apocalypse, or Final Judgment, which is shown in the rose window.

    Rose window? I dont remember any bible stories about roses.

    Thats because when we say rose window, were referring to stained glass windows of a circular shape, specifically those found in Gothic architecture, most notably in churches and cathedrals. The first rose windows were introduced in Romanesque architecture they were usually simple stone-carved round windows in the form of a wheel. The large, highly decorative stained glass rose windows we know of today date from the Gothic period, which started in the 12th century. The window is usually divided into sections that radiate out from a central oculus. During the late Gothic period, rose windows often resembled a flower with petals bursting out from the center in the Flamboyant style. If you look long enough at the Sainte-Chapelles rose window, which dates back to around 1495, it almost looks like a huge firework exploding the colors are incredible.

    Is that what makes the Sainte-Chapelle stained glass windows so impressive?

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