Aix Cathedral in Aix-en-Provence is built on the site of the 1st-century Roman forum of Aix. Built and re-built from the 12th until the 19th century, it includes Romanesque, Gothic and Neo-Gothic elements, as well as Roman columns and parts of the baptistery from a 6th-century Christian church. It is a national monument of France.

According to the Christian tradition, the first church on the site was founded by Saint Maximinus of Aix, who arrived in Provence from Bethany, a village near Jerusalem, with Mary Magdalene on a boat belonging to Lazarus. Maximin built a modest chapel on the site of the present cathedral and dedicated it to the Holy Saviour (le Saint Sauveur). During the invasion of the Saracens in the 8th and 9th centuries, the original chapel of Saint-Sauveur was destroyed.

At the beginning of the 12th century, a new church was begun on the same site, with Romanesque walls bearing the three bays of a wide single nave. A second nave, dedicated to Saint Maximinus, was built in about 1165-1177 as the church of the canons, which was located between the first nave and the baptistery. The choir of this church ended in a flat chevet wall, which connected by a door with the Sainte-Chapelle, part of the original 6th century episcopal buildings. The chapel was rebuilt in the 12th century, and when the Gothic nave was added, was incorporated into the cathedral and became the oratory of the Saviour. It was destroyed in 1808.

At the end of the 12th century and beginning of the 13th century, Aix became the capital of Provence, and the city's population and importance grew rapidly. Religious orders began to arrive; the Franciscans first, then the Dominicans, Carmelites, and Augustinians, building new churches, monasteries and convents.

A surge of construction on the cathedral paralleled the growth of importance of Aix. Two new wings of the transept, built in the Gothic style, were begun in about 1285–1290, and finished in 1316. Bay by bay, the old Romanesque church was transformed into a Gothic cathedral.

The building of the new church was interrupted by the Black Death and then the Hundred Years' War. Work did not resume for 130 years, until 1472, when the last bay was built. The façade took another thirty years, and the last statues were not put in place until 1513, at the beginning of the Renaissance.

The most notable artwork in the cathedral is the Burning Bush Triptych by Nicolas Froment. The stone altar, originally installed in the church of the Carmelites in Aix, was placed in the cathedral in 1823.



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Founded: 12th century
Category: Religious sites in France
Historical period: Birth of Capetian dynasty (France)

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User Reviews

蕭育正 (3 months ago)
A special atmosphere inside the cathédrale! Calm and silence. With a good collection of art. Highly recommend to visit!
Kate McKibben (5 months ago)
Beautiful cathedral in Aix, well worth a visit, the stained glass and organ are amazing
Miguel Hernandez (5 months ago)
This beautiful French cathedral feels holy from the moment you walk in. This amazing structure captures and preserves its history to share with its guest from the present. At times it feels as past brisk through your soul as you walk into certain spaces. Beautiful crafted with detailed architecture. It’s an amazing and beautiful cathedral.
Sylvia Limea (7 months ago)
First of all, in the middle of the hot summer month of August, there is no better place to find a bit of coolness and sit down in peace. A church that has a story to tell, it could almost be a museum, two organs face each other inside, statues on the outside of the facade, paintings inside and the glass windows show the presence of a real work of art and the interior is full of the most surprising corners. The memory of a beautiful visit
Raffaele Bonsignori (7 months ago)
Beauuuutiful cathedral! I definitely loved it! There's also a great cloister you can visit every 30 minutes guided by a really kind guide.
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Monte d'Accoddi

Monte d"Accoddi is a Neolithic archaeological site in northern Sardinia, located in the territory of Sassari. The site consists of a massive raised stone platform thought to have been an altar. It was constructed by the Ozieri culture or earlier, with the oldest parts dated to around 4,000–3,650 BC.

The site was discovered in 1954 in a field owned by the Segni family. No chambers or entrances to the mound have been found, leading to the presumption it was an altar, a temple or a step pyramid. It may have also served an observational function, as its square plan is coordinated with the cardinal points of the compass.

The initial Ozieri structure was abandoned or destroyed around 3000 BC, with traces of fire found in the archeological evidence. Around 2800 BC the remains of the original structure were completely covered with a layered mixture of earth and stone, and large blocks of limestone were then applied to establish a second platform, truncated by a step pyramid (36 m × 29 m, about 10 m in height), accessible by means of a second ramp, 42 m long, built over the older one. This second temple resembles contemporary Mesopotamian ziggurats, and is attributed to the Abealzu-Filigosa culture.

Archeological excavations from the chalcolithic Abealzu-Filigosa layers indicate the Monte d"Accoddi was used for animal sacrifice, with the remains of sheep, cattle, and swine recovered in near equal proportions. It is among the earliest known sacrificial sites in Western Europe.

The site appears to have been abandoned again around 1800 BC, at the onset of the Nuragic age.

The monument was partially reconstructed during the 1980s. It is open to the public and accessible by the old route of SS131 highway, near the hamlet of Ottava. It is 14,9 km from Sassari and 45 km from Alghero. There is no public transportation to the site. The opening times vary throughout the year.