A return to normality 18 months after a fire destroyed the building’s roof and steeple
It is perhaps fitting that the occasion of the first step of a return to normality is an exhibition of the cathedral’s turbulent history and previous return to glory after escaping destruction.
In 1831, at the time Victor Hugo’s novel The Hunchback of Notre-Dame was published, Paris officials proposed tearing down a crumbling, abandoned Notre-Dame.
As the exhibition relates, the publication of the novel resulted in a groundswell of public support for plans to restore the cathedral. Plans to tear it down were scrapped and between 1844 and 1864, the architect Eugene Viollet-Le-Duc completed the restoration of the cathedral into the building that we know today.
According to a report in Barrons, the exhibition consists of photos, drawings, painting and films about the cathedral.
Before the fire, the crypt’s archaeological museum, according the report, saw about 170,000 visitors a year.
Renovation work is underway on the cathedral itself, but has been delayed by concerns about lead pollution and because of the coronavirus epidemic.
In July, the office of Presidential Emmanuel Macron announced that Notre-Dame cathedral would be restored “as closely as possible to its last complete state.” Previously the French president had asked architects to come up with proposals for a “contemporary” touch to the cathedral.
If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.
Here are some numbers:
- 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
- Aleteia is published every day in eight languages: English, French, Arabic, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
- Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
- Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
- Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
- We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)
As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.
Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!