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Cologne Cathedral

Cologne Cathedral

Begun in 1248, the construction of this Gothic masterpiece took place in several stages and was not completed until 1880. Over seven centuries, successive builders were inspired by the same faith and a spirit of absolute fidelity to the original plans. Apart from its exceptional intrinsic value and the artistic masterpieces it contains, Cologne Cathedral testifies to the enduring strength of European Christianity.

Cathédrale de Cologne

Commencée en 1248, la construction de ce chef-d'œuvre de l'art gothique se fit par étapes et s'acheva en 1880. Au cours de ces sept siècles, ses bâtisseurs successifs furent animés de la même foi et d'un esprit de fidélité absolue aux plans d'origine. Outre son exceptionnelle valeur intrinsèque et les chefs-d'œuvre qu'elle recèle, la cathédrale de Cologne témoigne de la force et de la persistance de la foi chrétienne en Europe.

كاثدرائية كولونيا

بدأ بناء الكاتدرائية وهي تحفة من الفن القوطي في العام 1248. جرى العمل بها على مراحل إلى أن انتهت كلياً في العام 1880. خلال القرون السبعة، تحلّى البناة المتوالون بالإيمان نفسه وبروح الوفاء المطلق للمخططات الأصلية. وبالإضافة إلى قيمتها بحدّ ذاتها والى التحف الفنية التي تحتويها، فإن كاثدرائية كولونيا شهادة عن قوة وتواصل الإيمان المسيحي في أوروبا.

source: UNESCO/ERI

科隆大教堂

哥特式科隆大教堂始建于1248年,历经几个阶段的修建,直到1880才建成。在修建科隆大教堂的七个世纪中,一代代建筑师们秉承着相同的信念,做到了绝对忠实于最初的设计方案。除了其自身的重要价值和教堂内的艺术珍品以外,科隆大教堂还表现了欧洲基督教经久不衰的力量。

source: UNESCO/ERI

Кафедральный собор в городе Кëльн

Начатое в 1248 г. строительство этого шедевра готики проходило в несколько стадий, и было завершено только в 1880 г. Более семи столетий сменяющие друг друга строители вдохновлялись все той же верой и духом абсолютной преданности первоначальным замыслам. Кроме исключительной ценности самого здания и художественных шедевров, которые в нем находятся, Кëльнский собор важен как символ сохранения силы христианства в Европе.

source: UNESCO/ERI

Catedral de Colonia

Iniciada en 1248, la construcción de esta obra de arte gótico fue realizada por etapas y culminó en 1880. A lo largo de esos siete siglos, sus sucesivos constructores fueron animados por una misma fe y un espíritu de total fidelidad a los planos arquitectónicos primigenios. Además del excepcional valor de su arquitectura y de las obras de arte que contiene, esta catedral constituye un testimonio de la gran fuerza y la perdurabilidad de la fe cristiana en Europa.

source: UNESCO/ERI

ケルン大聖堂
1248年に始まり、数段階を経て1880年に竣工したゴシック様式の傑作。その建設者たちは、数百年にわたって当初のプランをかたくなに守り続けてきた。第二次世界大戦によって破壊されたが、完全に復旧された。

source: NFUAJ

Dom van Keulen

De bouw van dit gotische meesterwerk begon in 1248 en werd uitgevoerd in verschillende fasen tot het klaar was in 1880. Meer dan zeven eeuwen lang werden de opeenvolgende bouwers geïnspireerd door hetzelfde geloof en een geest van absolute trouw aan de oorspronkelijke plannen. De westelijke gevel is de grootste kerkgevel ter wereld met een oppervlak van 7000 vierkante meter, geflankeerd door 2 torens van elk 156 meter. Afgezien van de uitzonderlijke intrinsieke waarde en de artistieke meesterwerken die het bevat, getuigt de Dom van Keulen van de blijvende kracht van het Europese christendom.

Source: unesco.nl

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Cologne Cathedral © OUR PLACE
Outstanding Universal Value

Brief synthesis

Begun in 1248, the building of this Gothic masterpiece took place in several stages and was not completed until 1880. Over seven centuries, its successive builders were inspired by the same faith and by a spirit of absolute fidelity to the original plans. Apart from its exceptional intrinsic value and the artistic masterpieces it contains, Cologne Cathedral bears witness to the strength and endurance of European Christianity. No other Cathedral is so perfectly conceived, so uniformly and uncompromisingly executed in all its parts.

Cologne Cathedral is a High Gothic five-aisled basilica (144.5 m long), with a projecting transept (86.25 m wide) and a tower façade (157.22 m high). The nave is 43.58 m high and the side-aisles 19.80 m. The western section, nave and transept begun in 1330, changes in style, but this is not perceptible in the overall building. The 19th century work follows the medieval forms and techniques faithfully, as can be seen by comparing it with the original medieval plan on parchment.

The original liturgical appointments of the choir are still extant to a considerable degree. These include the high altar with an enormous monolithic slab of black limestone, believed to be the largest in any Christian church, the carved oak choir stalls (1308-11), the painted choir screens (1332-40), the fourteen statues on the pillars in the choir (c. 1300), and the great cycle of stained-glass windows, the largest existent cycle of early 14th century windows in Europe. There is also an outstanding series of tombs of twelve archbishops between 976 and 1612.

Of the many works of art in the Cathedral, special mention should be made to the Gero Crucifix of the late 10th century, in the Chapel of the Holy Cross, which was transferred from the pre-Romanesque predecessor of the present Cathedral, and the Shrine of the Magi (1180-1225), in the choir, which is the largest reliquary shrine in Europe. Other artistic masterpieces are the altarpiece of St. Clare (c. 1350-1400) in the north aisle, brought here in 1811 from the destroyed cloister church of the Franciscan nuns, the altarpiece of the City Patrons by Stephan Lochner (c. 1445) in the Chapel of Our Lady, and the altarpiece of St. Agilolphus (c. 1520) in the south transept.

Criterion (i): Cologne Cathedral is an exceptional work of human creative genius.

Criterion (ii): Constructed over more than six centuries Cologne Cathedral marks the zenith of cathedral architecture and at the same time its culmination.

Criterion (iv): Cologne Cathedral is a powerful testimony to the strength and persistence of Christian belief in medieval and modern Europe.

Integrity

Cologne Cathedral contains all the elements necessary to express the Outstanding Universal Value and is of appropriate size. All features and structures to convey its significance as Gothic masterpiece are present.

Authenticity

Cologne Cathedral has lost its original architectural context, but in the nineteenth and twentieth century an urban ensemble has been created around it, of which the building of the new Wallraf-Richartz-Museum is the last element. Form and design, use and function of Cologne Cathedral have remained unchanged during the centuries of construction. All the work, from the 13th to the 19th century, was carried out with scrupulous respect for the original design, and this tradition was continued in the post-World War II reconstruction. In this respect, Cologne Cathedral may be considered to be sui generis and hence its authenticity is absolute.

Protection and management requirements

The laws and regulations of the Federal Republic of Germany and the State of North Rhine-Westphalia guarantee the consistent protection of the Cologne Cathedral and its surroundings: The Cathedral is a listed monument according to paragraphs 2 and 3 of the Act on the Protection and Conservation of Monuments in the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, dated 11March 1980 (Protection Law). Conservation and building activities within and outside the property and in the buffer zone are regulated by paragraph 9 (2) of the Protection Law and Local Building Plans in order to ensure the effective protection of the important views of the Cathedral.

A Steering Committee (the Cathedral Construction Commission or Dombaukommission), which was established in 1946 and consists of the Archbishop of Cologne, the Dean of the Cathedral, the Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cologne, the Minister of the State North Rhine-Westphalia in charge of monument protection and the State Conservator of the Ministry, supervises the work of the Cathedral Workshop. The Cathedral Workshop – under the leadership of the Cathedral architect – is responsible for the maintenance, conservation and restoration in the medieval tradition and acts in concert with the regional and local historic monument conservation authorities.

The management system consists of a set of maintenance and conservation measures which is annually reviewed and updated when required by the Steering Committee.

Long Description

Cologne Cathedral, constructed over more than six centuries, has an exceptional intrinsic value and contains artistic masterpieces. It is a powerful testimony to the strength and persistence of Christian belief in medieval and modern Europe.

Christians met for worship in a private house in Roman Cologne near the city wall. Following the Edict of Milan in 313, when Constantine proclaimed religious freedom, this building was enlarged as a church. Alongside it were an atrium, a baptistry and a dwelling-house, possibly for the bishop. This modest ensemble was extended and enlarged in the following centuries. This immense building, known by the 13th century as 'the mother and master of all churches in Germany', was consecrated in September 70.

Post-Second World War excavations, as well as contemporary documents, provide evidence of its form and decoration - a basilica, with a central nave flanked by two aisles and a large atrium in front of its western facade. A two-storeyed Chapel of the Palatinate, in the style of Charlemagne's chapel in Aachen, was added to the south transept at the beginning of the 11th century, and later that century it was connected by two lofty arcades at the east end with the Collegiate Church of St Mary ad Gradus.

Despite its generous dimensions, this cathedral was found to be too small to accommodate the throngs of pilgrims who visited it after the relics of the Magi were brought there from Milan in 1164. The ambition of Engelbert to make his archiepiscopal cathedral into one of the most important in the Holy Roman Empire led him to urge the construction of an entirely new building, but the start of the work was delayed by his murder in 1225, and it was not until 1248 that work began. In 1560 much of the nave and the four side-aisles had been completed, along with the main structure of the lofty south tower of the west end. Despite numerous efforts, the cathedral remained in an uncompleted state for the following centuries.

When the French seized Cologne in 1794 the Archbishop and Chapter moved to Aachen, and the building was used first for storage of grain and fodder and then as a parish church. Work was to begin again after Cologne passed to Prussia in 1815. Karl Friedrich Schinkel visited the cathedral in 1816 and sent his talented pupil Ernst Friedrich Zwirner there as cathedral architect. The work did not begin, however, until 1840. By 1880 the building was complete, after 632 years and two months.

Cologne Cathedral is a High Gothic five-aisled basilica, with a projecting transept and a two-tower facade. The construction is totally unified. The western section, begun in 1330, changes in style, but this is not perceptible in the overall building. The 19th-century work followed the medieval forms and techniques faithfully. The original liturgical appointments of the choir are still extant to a considerable degree. These include the high altar on an enormous monolithic slab of black marble, the carved-oak choir stalls (1308-11), the painted choir screens (1332-40), the 14 statues on the pillars in the choir (1270-90), and the stained-glass windows, the largest extant cycle of 14th-century windows in Europe. There is an outstanding series of tombs of 12 archbishops between 976 and 1612.

Source: UNESCO/CLT/WHC
Historical Description

Christians met for worship in a private house in the north-east quarter of Roman Cologne near the city wall. Following the Edict of Milan in AD 313, when Constantine proclaimed religious freedom, this building was enlarged as a church. Alongside it were an atrium, a baptistery, and a dwelling-house, possibly for the bishop. This modest ensemble was extended and enlarged in the following centuries.

Credit for inspiring the construction of the first great Romanesque cathedral on the site is given to Archbishop Hildebold, a friend and advisor of Charlemagne. This immense building, known by the 13th century as "the mother and master of all churches in Germany; was consecrated by Archbishop Willibert in September 870. Post-world war II excavations, as well as contemporary documents, provide evidence of its form and decoration. It was a basilica, with a central nave flanked by two aisles, c. 95 m in length (two further flanking aisles were added in the mid-10th century, making it the first five-aisled church outside Rome) and with a large atrium in front of its western facade. A two-storeyed Chapel of the Palatinate, in the style of Charlemagne's chapel in Aachen, was added to the south transept at the beginning of the 11th century, and in the second half of that century it was connected by two lofty arcades at the east end with the Collegiate Church of St Mary ad Gradus.

Despite its generous dimensions, this cathedral was found to be too small to accommodate the throngs of pilgrims who visited it after the relics of the Magi were brought there from Milan in 1164 by Archbishop Reinald von Dassel. The ambition of Engelbert to make his archiepiscopal cathedral into one of the most important in the Holy Roman Empire led him to urge the construction of an entirely new building, but the start of the work was delayed by his murder in 1225, and it was not until1248 that work began.

The original intention had been to demolish only the west transept of the existing building, so that the remainder could continue as an archiepiscopal church, but careless demolition led to the destruction of the entire building by fire, and so the way was clear for the creation of an entirely new building under the master-builder Gerhard. It would appear that he was familiar with the great French cathedrals, especially Amiens; however, it is unlikely that he had worked there, since he incorporated the artistic components of Amiens without the technical innovations that took place there. Gerhard died around 1260 and work continued under his assistant Arnold, who was in charge until 1299. work continued steadily at the chevet (east end), where the painted windows were installed around 1310; the cathedral Chapter was able to install itself there and consecrate the high altar in 1322, after 74 years of construction.

Meanwhile, work was under way on the western part of the cathedral, and continued under successive master-builders until1560, when all work ceased on the instructions of the Chapter, for reasons that have never been satisfactorily explained. By this time much of the nave and the four side-aisles (continuing the plan of the Romanesque building) had been completed, along with the main structure of the lofty south tower of the west end. Despite numerous efforts, the cathedral remained in an uncompleted state for the following centuries, although some additions were made to the furnishings and decoration. When the French seized Cologne in 1794 the Archbishop and Chapter moved to Aachen, and the building was used first for storage of grain and fodder and then as a parish church. However, interest rekindled and a movement for its completion got under way. work was to begin again after Cologne passed to Prussia in 1815. Karl Friedrich Schinkel visited the cathedral in 1816 and sent his talented pupil Ernst Friedrich Zwirner there as Cathedral Architect. Work did not begin, however, until 1840, financed jointly by the Prussian King Friedrich Wilhelm IV and an independent Society of Friends of the Cathedral (which raised enormous sums from a series of lotteries). By 1880 the building was complete, after 632 years and two months.

During World War II the cathedral suffered tremendous damage during air-raids: no fewer than fourteen heavy bombs reduced it to a pitiful state. Restoration and reconstruction work rendered the chevet usable in time for the centenary celebrations in 1948, but the remainder of the building was not restored fully until1956.

 

Source: Advisory Body Evaluation