2 weeks in France-5-26 to 6/8/2022

Day 1

Historic center

Historic center con'd & Archdiocese' garden

Cathedral of Bourges/The Crypt

The Crypt continuation

Day 2

Musee Estève

Palais Jacques Coeur

Palais Jacques Coeur continuation

Dinner at la Gargouille

2 Days in Bourges, France-5/29/2022 to 5/30/2022

Day 1-Cathedral of Bourges-5/29/2022

The cathedral of Bourges has been listed as a World Heritage Site by Unesco site since 1992. The Cathedral of Bourges is a Roman Catholic church dedicated to Saint Stephen and is the seat of the Archbishop of Bourges.  Built between the late 12th and late 13th centuries, is one of the great masterpieces of Gothic art and is admired for its proportions and the unity of its design.

Western facade entrance with 5 portals is the widest among all the Gothic buildings in France.

A flight of 12 steps leads up to the five portals.


The cathedral marks its originality by the magnitude of the western façade with its five portals. They are consecrated, in order and from left to right, to: Guillaume de Bourges, the Virgin Mary, the Last Judgment (central portal), the martyr Stephen and Ursin de Bourges.


Entering the Cathedral.


Bourges Cathedral is noted for its immense and unified interior space; there is no interruption in the interior between the west front and the chevet on the east. The pillars of the arcade are about 69 ft. high, more than half of the 121 ft. height up to the vaults.


A rare array of early 13th century stained glass windows adorns the three levels of the choir and illuminates the stone with a mosaic of colored light.


Natural lighting entering the Cathedral via  2 levels of stained glass windows.


The chandeliers are simply beautiful inside the church.


The interior is voluminous and beautiful.


The Cathedral was under renovation so part of it was covered.

As you can see there is no transept (a cross-shaped church) in the Cathedral.


The Choir with carved wooden stall and a magnificent high altar made of marble ornate the Choir.


The main nave.


Pulpit on the left and the great organs are mentioned from the beginning of the 15th century but the current organs were redesigned under the direction of Marie-Claire Alain in 1977. This reconstruction was carried out by Daniel Kern from 1982 to 1985 who made a complete integration of the historical elements. The appearance of the instrument was respected, preserving as much as possible the old elements and removing many unreliable and ill-adapted elements added over the centuries.



The plan of the cathedral is simple and harmonious. It is a basilica with five naves and chapels surrounding the choir


Colorful stained glass windows.


The stained glass windows were added during the period from the 13th and 16th century are very rare and colorful and depict many stories from the Bible.


Stunning Stained glass windows in the Ambulatory


The Crypt

The construction of the new gothic building had to resolve problems related to the old surrounding walls.  Architects integrated the Romanesque choir of the previous cathedral into the new building. Thus it became the “lower church”, buried below the chevet due to a difference in ground level. Today, this area of the cathedral open to the public is the crypt.

The crypt of Bourges cathedral is amongst the largest in France.

We are now going to Crypt located in the basement of the Cathedral.


Long hallway leading to the Crypt.


A look back at the long hallway we just took

On the right is a stained window glass letting light inside the crypt.


Ambulatory to the Crypt.


Our Tour-guide wanting us to take a look at the gigantic pillars and vaulted ceiling in the ambulatory.



 A collection of stained glass made between 1391 and 1397 which formerly was installed in the windows of the Sainte-Chapelle chapel constructed by John, Duke of Berry, which was destroyed in 1757.


Lots of stained glass windows letting light in so the Crypt is bathed in light.



13th century rood screen is a common feature in late medieval church architecture.

 It is typically an ornate partition between the chancel and nave, of more or less open tracery constructed of wood, stone, or wrought iron. 

Rood screens can be found in churches in many parts of Europe, however, in Catholic countries they were generally removed during the Counter-Reformation.


Clover view of the rood screen.


NEXT.... Day 1-The crypt continuation





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