The Gothic Clermont Ferrand Black Cathedral – Facts, Mass Times and History

Clermont-Ferrand Cathedral, Rue Verdier Latour, Clermont-Ferrand, France

Website of the Sanctuary

Opening hours: from 7.45am to 12pm; and from 14h to 18h (19h from 15 June to 20 September). Visits are possible from 9am.

The Clermont Ferrand Cathedral is distinctive by its charcoal grey colour resulting from the Volvic lava stone used to build it. The interior conceals a remarkable collection of stained-glass windows and murals.

The Gothic Clermont Ferrand Black Cathedral - Facts, Mass Times and History

Work began on current-day Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption Cathedral in 1248, under the supervision of architect Jean Deschamps and of the episcopacy of Hughes de la Tour.

It stands upon the site of former churches, as can be seen from the crypt. It took seven centuries to complete, including lengthy stoppages in the work. The three spans, the portal and the western spires were built by Viollet-le-Duc in the 19th century.

Mass times:

  • Monday to Saturday: Mass at 8.00 h
  • Sundays: Mass at 10.00 h and at 18:30 h

The dimensions of the Clermont Ferrand Black Cathedral

  • Total length: 92 m.
  • Length of the choir: 36 m.
  • Length of the nave and transept: 28.70 m
  • Width of the transept: 32.70 m
  • Height of the crossing: 28.70 m.
  • Height of the aisle: 14.30 m.
  • Height of the Tour de la Bayette: 50.70 m
  • Height of the western spires: 108 m.

The Gothic Clermont Ferrand Black Cathedral - Facts, Mass Times and History

The dates of the construction:

  • Beginning of the Gothic choir: 1248.
  • End of the Gothic cathedral around 1350.
  • Beginning of the construction site of Viollet-le-Duc: 1866
  • The arrows are completed in 1884.
  • The stairs rue des Gras are from 1902.

Clermont Cathedral has an exceptional set of stained glass windows from the 12th to the 20th century. This panorama illustrates a true history of stained glass: Romanesque, Gothic, romantic and contemporary stained glass windows.

The Gothic Clermont Ferrand Black Cathedral - Facts, Mass Times and History

Interior and what to see

1. Chapel of St. Expédit (formerly dedicated to St. Catherine)

2. Confessional chapel with: c19 gothic wooden altar(1847)

3. Chapel of St Vital and St. Agricole – first patron saints of the cathedral 450-946 AD.

4. Chapels at the west-end each with a window by Alain Makaraviez to the south the Apocalypse; to the north Genesis

5. Chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour

6. Baptistry with C19 window depicting the marriage of Philippe le Hardi to Isabelle of Aragon in 1262, and St. Louis bringing the reliquary containing the Crown of Thorns to the bishop of Clement

The Gothic Clermont Ferrand Black Cathedral - Facts, Mass Times and History

7. Chapel of Our Lady of Lourdes

-North transept: access to the Bayette Tower, clock with quarter jacks (1527)
-North choir aisle: (c) painting by Vital Despigoux (1594) depicting the legend of St. Crispin and St. Crispinian, (d) choir organ masking a painting of the Virgin and Child (late C13). (e) sacristy door surmounted by a painting of Canon Gaultler praying to the Virgin of Candelmas (1280).

8. Chapel of St. George: the window and adjacent upper wall-painting depict the martyrdom of the patron saint of England, the lower painting shows a battle during the Crusades. Altar with statue of the Virgin sculpted by Mombur (died 1896).

9. Chapel of St. Austremoine: the windows recount the life of the Apostle of the Auvergne (c.250 A.D.). On the baroque alter the saint is surrounded by St. Catherine, St. Ignace and St. Frances-Xavier.

10. Chapel of St. Mary Magdalene: the windows portrays her life. On the baroque altar at Pieta with St. Alyre and St. Artheme bishops of Claimant. A painting of the clerics kneeling before the Virgin and Child.

11. Corpus Christi chapel: Altar by Philippe Kaeppelin (I965), gilded wooden processional cross (C12), Virgin in Majesty (C12) blackened in 1830. The windows decorated with fleurs~de-lys and Castillian castles suggest they may have been a gift from St. Louis in 1262.

12. Chapel of St. Bonnet; the windows portray the life of the saint. bishop of Clermont during the seventh century. Portrait of an angel welcoming six clerics, five of whom are canons wearing an amice. Two reliquaries relating to the Visitation.

13. Chantry chapel of the bishops; a kneeling figure of Massillon (1942) and a baroque altar with a statue of St. Anne. The two lights of the central window consist of C12 glass fiom the former Romanesque cathedral.

14. Chapel of St. Margaret : the windows depict the lives of St. Margaret and St. Privat. Painting of the Nativity with St. Anthony and St. Margaret.

15. Chapel of St. Agatha: the windows depict the martyrom of the saint. Painting of the Crucifixion with St. Agatha and St. Loop. Painted wooden Pieta (I477). Statue of the Risen Christ formerly in the north porch (late C13).

16. Chapel of St. Artheme; reredos with statues of St. Crispin and St Crispinian, patron saints of cordwainers. Bust of St. Peter. On the west wall a trompe l‘oil epitaph in greek.

17. Chapel of Our Lady of the Assumption: altar with imposing baroque reredos dedicated to the Virgin.

18. Choir: (1) high altar in gilded copper designed by Violiet-le-Duc, made by the goldsmith Bachelet (1855), (g) pascal candlestick in gilded bronze by Caffieri (I771).

Sanctuary furnishings – small lectern (1976) side altar (1977) cross (1971?) by Philippe Kaepplin. In front of the pillars to either side of the chair steps are two limestone statues of the Virgin and St. John the Evangelist formerly on the great rood-screen.

Source:

The Clermont Ferrand Cathedral is distinctive by its charcoal grey colour resulting from the Volvic lava stone used to build it. The interior conceals a remarkable collection of stained-glass windows and murals.

Interior and what to see

1. Chapel of St. Bxpédit (formerly dedicated to St. Catherine)

2. Confessional chapel with: €19 gothic wooden altar(1847)

3. Chapel of St Vital and St. Agricole – first patron saints of the cathedral 450-946 AD.

4 Chapels at the west-end each with a window by Alain Makaraviez to the south the Apocalypse; to the north Genesis

5. Chapel of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour

6. Baptistry with C19 window depicting the marriage of Philippe le Hardi to Isabelle of Aragon in 1262, and St. Louis bringing the reliquary containing the Crown of Thorns to the bishop of Clement

7. Chapel of Our Lady of Lourdes

-North transept: access to the Bayette Tower, clock with quarter jacks (1527)
-North choir aisle: (c) painting by Vital Despigoux (1594) depicting the legend of St. Crispin and St. Crispinian, (d) choir organ masking a painting of the Virgin and Child (late C13). (e) sacristy door surmounted by a painting of Canon Gaultler praying to the Virgin of Candelmas (1280)

8. Chapel of St. George: the window and adjacent upper wall-painting depict the martyrdom of the patron saint of England, the lower painting shows a battle during the Crusades. Altar with statue of the Virgin sculpted by Mombur (died 1896)

9. Chapel of St. Austremoine: the windows recount the life of the Apostle of the Auvergne (c.250 A.D.). On the baroque alter the saint is surrounded by St. Catherine, St. Ignace and St. Frmeis-Xavier

10. Chapel of St. Mary Magdalene: the windows portrays her life. On the baroque altar at Pieta with St. Alyre and St. Artheme bishops of Claimant. A painting of the clerics kneeling before the Virgin and Child

11. Corpus Christi chapel: Altar by Philippe Kaeppelin (I965), gilded wooden processional cross (C12), Virgin in Majesty (C12) blackened in 1830. The windows decorated with fleurs~de-lys and Castillian castles suggest they may have been a gift from St. Louis in 1262

12. Chapel of St. Bonnet; the windows portray the life of the saint. bishop of Clermont during the seventh century. Portrait of an angel welcoming six clerics, five of whom are canons wearing an amice. Two reliquaries relating to the Visitation

l3. Chantry chapel of the bishops; a kneeling figure of Massillon (1942) and a baroque altar with a statue of St. Anne. The two lights of the central window consist of C12 glass fiom the former Romanesque cathedral

14. Chapel of St. Margaret : the windows depict the lives of St. Margaret and St. Privat. Painting of the Nativity with St. Anthony and St. Margaret

15. Chapel of St. Agatha: the windows depict the martyrom of the saint. Painting of the Crucifixion with St. Agatha and St. Loop. Painted wooden Pieta (I477). Statue of the Risen Christ formerly in the north porch (late C13)

16. Chapel of St. Artheme; reredos with statues of St. Crispin and St Crispinian, patron saints of cordwainers. Bust of St. Peter. On the west wall a trompe l‘oil epitaph in greek.

l7. Chapel of Our Lady of the Assumption: altar with imposing baroque reredos dedicated to the Virgin

18. Choir: (1) high altar in gilded copper designed by Violiet-le-Duc, made by the goldsmith Bachelet (1855), (g) pascal candlestick in gilded bronze by Caffieri (I771).

The dates of the construction:

  • Beginning of the Gothic choir: 1248.
  • End of the Gothic cathedral around 1350.
  • Beginning of the construction site of Viollet-le-Duc: 1866
  • The arrows are completed in 1884.
  • The stairs rue des Gras are from 1902.

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