The Basilica Notre-Dame of Geneva is the main Roman Catholic church in Geneva. The church was built according to the design of Alexandre Grigny between 1852 and 1857 on the site of a former stronghold fortifications. This neo-Gothic building, whose appearance is partly inspired by the Beauvais Cathedral, could break ground thanks to the city of Geneva, which had ceded land to religious communities to build places of worship, and through donations and manual labor provided by the Geneva Catholics.
After the coming to power of an anti-clerical government, Notre Dame was occupied on June 5, 1875 and closed. This occupation is accompanied by a protest against the Roman Catholic and more unrests. The commitment of Catholics to this sanctuary becomes even greater. Notre-Dame was bought by the Catholic Church in 1911–1912.
On December 5, 1954, Bishop François Charrière, diocesan bishop, pronounced in the name of Pope Pius XII the elevation of the shrine to the rank of minor basilica.
The oldest art works of the basilica date back to the time immediately preceding the Protestant Reformation like a carved wood panel with bas-relief image of the Virgin Mary, mutilated with an ax by Protestants.
The stained glass windows of the basilica are particularly remarkable. Some are semi-industrial production neo-gothic, but most show the evolution of the art of stained glass during the twentieth century, in various styles, after those of Claudius Lavergne (installed from 1857 to 1875).References:
The Château des ducs de Bretagne (Castle of the Dukes of Brittany) is a large castle located in Nantes. It served as the centre of the historical province of Brittany until its separation in 1941. It was the residence of the Dukes of Brittany between the 13th and 16th centuries, subsequently becoming the Breton residence of the French Monarchy. Today the castle houses the Nantes History Museum.
The restored edifice now includes the new Nantes History Museum, installed in 32 of the castle rooms. The museum presents more than 850 objects of collection with the aid of multimedia devices. The castle and the museum try to offer a modern vision of the heritage by presenting the past, the present and the future of the city. Night-time illuminations at the castle further reinforce the revival of the site. The 500-metre round walk on the fortified ramparts provides views not just of the castle buildings and courtyards but also of the town.