Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Basilica of Montmartre- History

History of the Sacred-Heart basilica of Montmartre

The Basilica of Montmartre is located in a hill inside Paris, its location has always been a place of cult. Firstly with Gauls cults, also with Gallo-romans cults dedicated to ''Mercury'' and ''Mars''.
It became a place for christian cult after the martyr of the bishop Denis during the second century AD.

1870 was a terrible year for France, war, cold and hunger so a feeling of going back to faith appeared. Two men  Alexandre Legentil and his brother-in-law Hubert Rohault de Fleury then made a vow to built a basilica. For them the problems that France was undergoing was more spiritual than political. The idea was to build a basilica to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, which was a devotion to the Jesus' heart in penitence for sins.
The 24 of july 1873, a law of public utility regarding the chuch was passed, allowed the Archbishop of Paris to acquire the land on the butt of Montmartre by expropriation if necessary.

The cost of the basilica construction have fully been paid for by national subscriptions. Each subscriber had an engraved piece of stone with his name on the basilica, when you watched closely it's possible to see on the stones of the church the subcribers' names. 
Around 10 millions people contributed financially to the building of the Sacred heart of Montmartre on a period of almost 50 years. 

The architect chosen Paul Abadie won the competition to build the basilica. The construction started in 1875 and lasted until 1914. However the interior decoration ended in 1923. Paul Abadie, died in 1884, and never saw the dedication of the Sacred-Heart basilica of Montmartre in 1919.       

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