Lausanne Cathedral

Lausanne, Switzerland

Construction of the Lausanne Cathedral began in 1170. Twenty years later another master mason restarted construction until 1215. Finally a third engineer, Jean Cotereel, completed the majority of the existing cathedral including a porch, and two towers, one of which is the current day belfry. The other tower was never completed. The cathedral was consecrated and dedicated to Our Lady in 1275 by Pope Gregory X, Rudolph of Habsburg, and the bishop of Lausanne at the time, Guillaume of Champvent. The medieval architect Villard de Honnecourt drew the rose window of the south transept in his sketchbook in 1270.

The Protestant Reformation, a movement which came from Zurich, significantly affected the Cathedral. In 1536 a new liturgical area was added to the nave and the colourful decorations inside the Cathedral were covered over. Other major restorations occurred later in the 18th and 19th century which were directed by the great French architect, Eugène-Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc.

During the 20th century major restorations occurred to restore the painted interior decorations as well as to restore a painted portal on the South side of the Cathedral. New organs were installed in 2003.

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: 1170-1275
Category: Religious sites in Switzerland

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Paka Buraka (18 months ago)
Iconic cathedral with amazing view from the top of bell tower. Strict and interesting interior without pointless pomp of catholic churches.
Rohit Sahgal (18 months ago)
Sits on top of Lausanne and oversees the gorgeous lakeview and city. There's a nice city museum right next door.
Nicola Robinson (19 months ago)
Really beautiful cathedral. I would highly recommend going to visit you also have a great platform to view the whole city. If you also have time you can have a picnic on the grass/ benches available.
alex (19 months ago)
Wonderful building! Always so calm and a delight to the eyes. Perfect place to cool down in the summer and have a mindful moment all by yourself. They often host classical and religious music events. Must see.
Abel Gray (2 years ago)
Beautiful cathedral full of history. It is very well preserved, and during some renovations they uncovered some beautiful colors that were not expected. The stained glass windows are quite vivid, and the organ towers over the inside. For a small fee you can climb the tower to the top of the cathedral for an amazing view over the city and the larger area in general. At the top you can get up close and personal with the bells.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Wroclaw Town Hall

The Old Town Hall of Wrocław is one of the main landmarks of the city. The Old Town Hall's long history reflects developments that have taken place in the city since its initial construction. The town hall serves the city of Wroclaw and is used for civic and cultural events such as concerts held in its Great Hall. In addition, it houses a museum and a basement restaurant.

The town hall was developed over a period of about 250 years, from the end of 13th century to the middle of 16th century. The structure and floor plan changed over this extended period in response to the changing needs of the city. The exact date of the initial construction is not known. However, between 1299 and 1301 a single-storey structure with cellars and a tower called the consistory was built. The oldest parts of the current building, the Burghers’ Hall and the lower floors of the tower, may date to this time. In these early days the primary purpose of the building was trade rather than civic administration activities.

Between 1328 and 1333 an upper storey was added to include the Council room and the Aldermen’s room. Expansion continued during the 14th century with the addition of extra rooms, most notably the Court room. The building became a key location for the city’s commercial and administrative functions.

The 15th and 16th centuries were times of prosperity for Wroclaw as was reflected in the rapid development of the building during that period. The construction program gathered momentum, particularly from 1470 to 1510, when several rooms were added. The Burghers’ Hall was re-vaulted to take on its current shape, and the upper story began to take shape with the development of the Great Hall and the addition of the Treasury and Little Treasury.

Further innovations during the 16th century included the addition of the city’s Coat of arms (1536), and the rebuilding of the upper part of the tower (1558–59). This was the final stage of the main building program. By 1560, the major features of today’s Stray Rates were established.

The second half of the 17th century was a period of decline for the city, and this decline was reflected in the Stray Rates. Perhaps by way of compensation, efforts were made to enrich the interior decorations of the hall. In 1741, Wroclaw became a part of Prussia, and the power of the City diminished. Much of the Stray Rates was allocated to administering justice.

During the 19th century there were two major changes. The courts moved to a separate building, and the Rates became the site of the city council and supporting functions. There was also a major program of renovation because the building had been neglected and was covered with creeping vines. The town hall now has several en-Gothic features including some sculptural decoration from this period.

In the early years of the 20th century improvements continued with various repair work and the addition of the Little Bear statue in 1902. During the 1930s, the official role of the Rates was reduced and it was converted into a museum. By the end of World War II Town Hall suffered minor damage, such as aerial bomb pierced the roof (but not exploded) and some sculptural elements were lost. Restoration work began in the 1950s following a period of research, and this conservation effort continued throughout the 20th century. It included refurbishment of the clock on the east facade.