In this article, we are taking an in-depth look at the incident of the Notre Dame Cathedral fire that took place back on 15 April 2019, where a sudden burst of fire broke out in the roof area of Notre Dame de Paris, in the famous capital city of France – Paris.
What Is The Historically Famous Building – Notre Dame Cathedral?
Notre Dame de Paris or simply known as Notre Dame is a medieval Catholic cathedral located on the Il de la Cite island in the Seine River in Paris, France. The literal French meaning of the name of the cathedral is Our Lady of Paris.
The cathedral was started to be constructed in 1163 under the orders of Bishop Maurice de Sully. Much of the construction work was over by 1260. The cathedral was dedicated to the virgin holy Mother Mary and was intended to be a pious place. However, during the French Revolution era in the 1790s, the Notre Dame Cathedral suffered extensive violations and damages.
Later, between the 1840s and 1860s, the cathedral was restored under the supervision of Eugene Viollet-le-duc who was inspired to undertake the initiative by Victor Hugo’s novel – ‘Notre Dame de Paris’.
The cathedral is considered to be one of the finest examples of French-Gothic architecture in the world. What sets it apart from other monuments is the cathedral’s rib vault, enormous colorful windows, and abundance of natural and sculptural decoration. In the early 21st century, Notre Dame was the most visited tourist monument spot in Paris.
The Infamous Notre Dame Fire of 2019
The blazing mysterious fire on 15th April 2019, caused several damages to the original structure of Notre Dame Cathedral. The entire gorgeous and intricate spire of the Cathedral collapsed along with most of its roof by the time the fire was extinguished. Without the roof and spire, the Notre Dame Cathedral is not the same grandiose as it once was.
According to official reports, the cause of the fire has been ruled out to be accidental. It is speculated to have been ignited by the six electronic balls that were hanging from the spire with its cables running down the roof which were installed there for the ongoing renovation work. A short circuit in either of the cables might have induced the fire.
According to Julien Le Bras, who is the head of the company that was in charge of the 2019 renovation, “Electric wires were running in the roof, placed there at the express demand of the clergy. Despite the risk of short-circuiting, and in breach of all the safety regulations laid out by the chief architects of historic monuments”.
What Julien said in his statement indicates some foul play by someone who most likely might be the clergy.
Current Initiatives To Restore The Cathedral From The Infamous Fire Damage
Soon after the fire, a 5-year restoration plan was initiated to rebuild the historical Gothic monument. The restoration work is currently underway with workers working vigorously day and night.
According to General Jean-Louis Georgelin who is the French army general and the supervisor of the restoration project, “My job is to be ready to open this cathedral in 2024. And we will do it. We are fighting every day for that and we are on a good path.”
The restoration work is aimed to be completed by the summer of 2024 and the monument will be again opened for flocking visitors.