Trier Cathedral

Trier, Germany

The Cathedral of Saint Peter in Trier is the oldest cathedral in Germany. The edifice is notable for its extremely long life span under multiple different eras each contributing some elements to its design, including the center of the main chapel being made of Roman brick laid under the direction of Saint Helen, resulting in a cathedral added onto gradually rather than rebuilt in different eras. Its dimensions, 112.5 by 41 m, make it the largest church structure in Trier. In 1986 it was listed as part of the Roman Monuments, Cathedral of St. Peter and Church of Our Lady in Trier UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The structure is raised upon the foundations of Roman buildings of Augusta Treverorum. Following the conversion of the Emperor Constantine the Bishop Maximin of Trier (329-346) coordinated the construction of the grandest ensemble of ecclesiastical structures in the West outside Rome: on a groundplan four times the area of the present cathedral no less than four basilicas, a baptistery and outbuildings were constructed; the four piers of the crossing formed the nucleus of the present structure.

The fourth-century structure was left in ruins by the Franks and rebuilt. Normans destroyed the structure again in 882. Under Archbishop Egbert (d. 993) it was restored once more.

The West front in five symmetrical sections remains typical of Romanesque architecture under the Salian emperors. The West end choir, with its apsidal semi-cylinder expressed on the exterior façade, was completed in 1196. The interior is of three Romanesque naves with Gothic vaulting, and a Baroque chapel for the relic of the Seamless robe of Jesus, recovered from the interior of the high altar in 1512, complete the interior.

The skull of St. Helena, the mother of Emperor Constantine, is displayed in the cathedral.

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Address

Windstraße 6-8, Trier, Germany
See all sites in Trier

Details

Founded: 4th century / 1235
Category: Religious sites in Germany
Historical period: Hohenstaufen Dynasty (Germany)

Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Zachary Ponds (2 years ago)
Wow. What a beautiful piece of history! Trier is the oldest city in Germany and St. Peter's Cathedral has the oldest history of any cathedral in Germany. Having been a Roman city soon after Trier was founded, the cathedral shares the architectural style from the 12th centrury Romans. Highly recommend stopping through Trier if you find yourself in the Rhineland area.
Chris Cooley (3 years ago)
Absolutely stunning and the fact this was built so long ago with such detail is a testament to architecture. When this place is open it is a must see, you feel different walking inside here and lighting a candle to lost loved ones is also amazing. This medieval gothic design is amazing. I can’t say enough how pretty.
Oksana Tonkopryad (3 years ago)
this place is so gorgeous that it is worth visiting it more than once as this magnificent building was built with soul and love ...
the silent gamer (3 years ago)
The place has some of the best architecture I have ever seen
Dorothy Walker (3 years ago)
The beauty inside the church is well worth the trip.
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