Know your Sacre Coeur

Do You Know Your Sacré Coeur ? 6

by Michael

"Sacre Coeur"

The Sacré Coeur Basilica is not as old as many visitors may assume – completed on the eve of WWI, it predates the great US skyscrapers by little more than a decade, and most US cities have quite a few buildings that are a good deal older.

"Basilica of Sacre Coeur"

Sacré Coeur is essentially a product of the 19th century Cold Civil War, between those who thought the only fault of the Revolution was that it had not gone far enough and those who thought that it was all the work of the Devil.

"At the back of Sacre Coeur"

The church was constructed by the latter group as a type of fortress on the highest hill in Paris, overlooking the City, in the aftermath of one of those revolts (1871) that did not quite reach the critical mass required for a full-blown “revolution”. It was commissioned as a muscular symbol for the resurrection and resilience of the old order – and completed when this old order was about to ride into the sunset of history, never to return.

"Sacre Coeur in snow"

Its architectural style is probably best described as “eclectic”, which is academia-speak for “a little bit of this, a little bit of that”. Still, many people appear to think it’s quite pretty, and you will find that the Sacre Coeur is mainly disliked by folks with a lot of – not always justified – pride in their own artistic tastes. Foremost among them Adolf Hitler, who summed up his opinion in a single word: “appalling”

"Sacre Coeur seen from Place de Tertre"

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6 thoughts on “Do You Know Your Sacré Coeur ?

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Do you know your Sacre Coeur | Memorable Movies And Montmartre -- Topsy.com

  2. Reply Cathy Sweeney Feb 11,2011 4:45 am

    Nice overview of Sacre-Coeur. I think that it is quite beautiful. I was surprised to learn on my trip that it wasn’t as old as I thought. Great photos, too.

  3. Reply Tony Mallett Mar 13,2011 1:45 pm

    My favourite church, anywhere. Although not religious, I always try to stop off there when in Paris.

    For reasons that are a wee bit too personal to share here, I once sat and cried within its walls, lit a candle on the way out, drank in the view over the city…and subsequently bowled down the hill to get pissed as a newt in Montmartre.

  4. Pingback: Good Friday in Montmartre | Memorable Movies And Montmartre

  5. Reply Jeremy Branham Jun 28,2011 9:52 pm

    Nice history lesson on Sacre Coeur! Even if people don’t like it, you have to visit. Offers one of the best views in all of Paris!

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