The Cathedral of Our Lady (Dutch: Onze-Lieve-Vrouwekathedraal) is a Roman Catholic cathedral in Antwerp, Belgium. Its architects were Jan and Pieter Appelmans. The church’s one finished spire is 404 ft high, the highest church tower in the Benelux. Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor commented that the spire should be kept under glass, and Napoleon compared the spire to Mechlin lace. The largest bell in the tower requires 16 bell ringers. The west portal features statues which include the missionary Saint Willibrordus. He is thought to have spent time in Antwerp in the 7th century. The Cathedral contains a number of significant works by the Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens, as well as paintings by artists such as Otto van Veen, Jacob de Backer and Marten de Vos.
In 1352, construction was begun on a new Our Lady’s church which would become the largest Gothic church in the Netherlands. In the beginning, it was to be provided with two towers of equal height. In 1521, after nearly 170 years, the new church of Our Lady was ready. The south tower reached only as far as the third string course. During the night of 5–6 October 1533, the new church was largely gutted by fire. The completion of the second tower was therefore delayed, which led to its ultimate postponement. During the Iconoclasm of 20 August 1566 (at the start of the Eighty Years’ War), protestants destroyed a large part of the cathedral interior. Later, when Antwerp came under protestant administration in 1581, a number of artistic treasures were once again destroyed, removed or sold. Around 1798, the French administration intended to demolish the building but after each blow, the cathedral was able to recover. In 1816, various important works of art were returned from Paris, including three Rubens masterpieces. And over the course of the 19th century, the church was completely restored and refurnished. Between 1965 and 1993, a complete restoration took place…
The Cathedral of Our Lady is the best brilliant in a crown of Antwerp but sometimes it transforms to gold and looks like real symbol of this ‘City of Gold and Diamonds’.
Much better viewed large on black View On Black
Posted by >egold. on 2011-10-19 14:25:14