Notre Dame was in ruins. Victor Hugo’s novel about a hunchback saved it.Breaking News
tags: Paris, Notre Dame, French history, literature, Notre Dame fire
Notre Dame has gone through a lot in its 856 years. It has endured ill-advised remodeling, revolutionary ransacking and pollution-induced decay. Hitler once had it slated for demolition.
On Monday, fire raged through the cathedral, consuming its roof and causing its central spire to collapse. The full scale of “colossal damage” has yet to be assessed, but French President Emmanuel Macron vowed that the Paris landmark would be rebuilt, and donations to do so began pouring in from some of France’s richest families.
“Notre Dame of Paris is our history,” Macron said. “The epicenter of our lives. It’s the many books, the paintings, those that belong to all French men and French women, even those who’ve never come.”
France has rebuilt it before. In the early 1800s, Notre Dame was half-ruined when a writer used the crumbling structure as the setting for one of his greatest works, setting in motion a rescue operation nearly as grand as its original construction.
comments powered by Disqus
- When Jim Crow Reigned Amid the Rubble of Nazi Germany
- Why Suburban American Homeowners Were Accused of Being a 'Profit-Making Cartel' in the 1970s
- Animals large and small once covered North America’s prairies – and in some places, they could again
- Library of Congress acquires major archive of African American photographer Shawn Walker
- A farm boy became a fearsome warrior at Iwo Jima. And he did it with a flamethrower.
- Trump and the Christians: Evangelical historian John Fea on decoding the great paradox
- Six historians weigh in on the biggest misconceptions about black history
- Renowned presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin finally takes on George Washington
- Legal Historian Jed Shugerman Says William Barr's Actions Are "Remarkably Not Normal"
- Historian Ruth Ben-Ghiat Quoted in Washington Post Article on Trump's Quest to Rewrite History