Welcome back to the Age of Cathedrals. In our last time together, we discussed the transformation of King Louis IX of France, who built the Sainte-Chapelle in Paris to house relics, into a saint whose own body yielded relics with the power to cause miracles, especially miraculous cures of the sick and lame. Today, in our last time together, we shall explore the history of cathedrals from their original state in the High Middle Ages until the current era. The history of Gothic cathedral since their construction in the High Middle Ages for the most part in the 12th and 13th centuries, is a story of destruction, by men and by nature, and restoration. The great moment of human destruction occurred in the aftermath of the French Revolution of 1789 as a result of the association of the church with the kings of the Ancien Régime. The first cathedral Saint-Denis was, it will be remembered, the traditional burial place of the French monarchy and its burial vaults were ransacked in 1793. The jamb statues on either side of the doors of the west facade of the cathedral were taken down and some were sold to the highest bidder. The enthusiasm of revolutionaries removed the gallery of kings which stood over the principal entrances on the west facade of Notre-Dame in Paris as we see in this photo taken in 1841. Notre-Dame was further damaged in the July Revolution of 1830 when the sacristy and archbishop's house were ransacked as we see in this drawing by Eugène-Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc, who may actually have participated in the event. The Sainte-Chapelle, which was used as a storehouse for grain and then a judicial archive after the revolution, suffered from half a century of neglect. In Chartres, which was renamed the Temple of Reason, the famous statue of the Black Virgin was destroyed. Some of the statuary on the north and south portals were damaged, and the lead in the roof along with the centerpiece of the famous labyrinth were melted down to make cannons or ammunition. At Noyon, another cathedral closely associated with monarchy, revolutionaries struck out its statuary on the west facade. The bare tympanum and archivolts still show the traces of hammer marks. Revolutionary fervor was not the only enemy of cathedrals. Lack of maintenance of the roofs after 1789 led to water damage and the delicate timber work of spires, if not maintained, tended to rot. When the spire of Notre-Dame began to deteriorate in the mid 1800s, it was taken down as we see in this photo shot in 1857 of Notre-Dame without its tall spire above the transept crossing. Natural disasters have further harmed cathedrals as was the case of the northwestern tower of Saint-Denis, which was so weakened by a tornado in 1846, that it had to be disassembled, stone by stone. Just this past summer in 2016, the mayor of the town of Saint-Denis announced the project to rebuild the north tower using the very stones that were taken down and kept in orderly fashion 170 years ago. Fires were a constant source of damage to cathedrals in the Middle Ages, and the destruction has continued into the present era. Chartres was rebuilt due to fires in 1137 and 1194 and part of the wooden forest below the roof at Chartres had to be replaced as a result of a fire in 1836. In the current era, dramatic damage to cathedrals has been inflicted by modern means of warfare. Most Gothic cathedrals are in the north of France and gothic style has traditionally been associated with Germany, which means that they have been near military theatres in the two World Wars of the past century. On September 19 1914, the first of two dozen German shells hit the cathedral of Reims, which destroyed the upper vaults and ignited the roof structure. Noyon, too, was the victim of bombing in World War I and both Reims and Noyon took some two decades to rebuild, nor was the destruction confined to one side only. Cologne Cathedral was damaged in the Allied bombings of the city in 1944, though it fared rather better than either Reims or Noyon. The great period of cathedral restoration was the middle of the 19th century and the greatest of all the restorers was a man by the name of Eugène-Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc, who was born in 1814 and died in 1879. Without ever formally having studied architecture but being extremely well connected by a family relations to Prosper Mérimée, the author of the novella 'Carmen' and the person in charge of maintaining public monuments in France, after the revolution of 1830, Viollet-le-Duc received, at the age of 22, the commission to restore the Abbey of Sainte-Marie-Madeleine in Vezelay. Here we see Viollet-le-Duc's drawing of the abbey in its state of ruin in 1836 and in its restored state as one can still visit it today. From his success at Vezelay, Viollet-le-Duc went on to rescue the abbey of Saint-Denis from the failed attempts to repair it after the tornado of 1846. He restored the Basilica of Saint-Sernin, Toulouse. The island fortress of Mont-Saint-Michel, which in the 19th century was used as a prison. He restored the walled city of Carcassonne, which is still the very archetype of the medieval walled city. Interestingly, Carcassonne had an influence upon the side of the old campus buildings of Yale that faced the New Haven Green. Viollet-le-Duc was responsible for the rebuilding of the late medieval castle Pierrefonds, the fantasy of his friend the empress Eugenie and her husband Louis-Napoléon III. But most of all, the great restorer was known for the work he did with Jean-Baptiste Lassus in restoring the Sainte-Chapelle in Paris. And between 1843 and 1863, the massive restoration of Notre-Dame de Paris, which we here see in a photograph taken in 1847 with a scaffolding still visible on the south tower and the choir. Note too that the sacristy which was destroyed in the July Revolution of 1830 had still not been rebuilt. Viollet-le-Duc wrote an enormous dictionary of architectural terms. The most famous definition of which is the word 'restoration' itself. "Both the word and the thing are modern," Viollet states. "To restore an edifice means neither to maintain it, nor to repair it, nor to rebuild it. It means to reestablish it in a finished state which may, in fact, never have actually existed at any given time." The 19th century restorer is often criticized for what some consider to be more in the line of renovation than restoration. But he did rebuild the flying buttresses to reflect their original design. And at the same time, he returned some of the windows in the clerestory to their original design, as we see in this photograph of the transept crossing. Originally the windows of Notre-Dame consisted of smaller lancets, below which stood a spoked ocular opening. The long lancet windows which here we see lining the rest of the nave were medieval renovations, designed to let in more light. We are able to trace the changes made to Notre-Dame thanks to drawings that predate Viollet's restoration. These include even the contents, such as this image of the choir screen that separated the clergy from the mass of worshippers before the revolution. We know about the prehistory of Notre-Dame through eyewitness accounts to the extent to which they are reliable. We know about changes through some early photographs. We know about changes through marks in stone and holes made for scaffolding which are deciphered by architectural historians, as an archaeologist would interpret the material artifacts of a culture. And we know about what Notre-Dame looked like before its massive 19th century restoration because of a great plaster model which Viollet-le-Duc made before starting work on the actual building, and which is now in Paris's Trocadero Museum of Historical Monument called "The City of Architecture." Viollet-le-Duc rebuilt the flying buttresses of Notre-Dame. He restored the statuary and the south portal and on the facade as we see in this comparison of the damaged, toothless Notre-Dame and the cathedral in its present state. Using drawings made before the revolution, Viollet-le-Duc was able to recreate much of the sculptural design of the original. Here we see for example all that is left of the scene of the rising of the dead in Notre-Dame's central tympanum of the west facade. And here we see the scene of that relief in its current restored state. Viollet-le-Duc repaired the roof and the gutter system of Notre-Dame such that water would drain properly down the top of the upper flying buttress and from there to the ground. He rebuilt and reinstalled the spire as we see in this 1860 drawing for the new one. He repaired stained glass and removed the neoclassical touches on the interior, that is the marble panels which covered the original Gothic piers and pillars. Medieval cathedrals were painted on the inside and Viollet developed a series of polychrome patterns that were part of his restoration. Viollet-le-Duc is sometimes criticized for taking certain liberties in his restorations, most particularly in some of the gargoyles that now sit atop Notre-Dame and which tell us more about the concerns of the 19th century than about the medieval past. The modern gargoyles are a virtual bestiary in keeping with the medieval fascination with the nature of the animal kingdom. Here we see on the right a pelican, and in the middle an angry large cat. And on the left a chimera with the body of a land animal and the wings of a bird. And here on the left, an elephant next to a hungry cat to judge by the prominence of its ribs. Some of the gargoyles that Viollet-le-Duc put in place may have even been inspired by Victor Hugo's, "Hunchback of Notre-Dame" as in this figure known as the Pensive Demon or The Stryge, referring to an ancient bird of ill omen. Scholars have noted that the hooked nose and horns may refer to the physiognomy associated with Jews, and thus to participate in nineteenth century anti-semitism. Another such figure is that of Ahasver, adapted from the name Ahasverus from the book of Esther. And here shown on the balcony of Notre-Dame wearing the hat described in medieval manuscript illumination to the figure of the Wandering Jew. It may be said that Viollet-le-Duc took many liberties in restoring Notre-Dame de Paris. And he was not shy about leaving his own mark upon the cathedral of cathedrals in the heart of Paris. Here we see from the rear, a larger than life full-length statue of the restorer on the roof of Notre-Dame among figures from the old testament. And even one of the evangelists, John, whose emblematic figure is the winged eagle. From the front, we recognize Viollet-le-Duc's face, and in his hand he holds the medieval Master Masons measuring rod on which are written the words abbreviated as if in a medieval manuscript "Eugène Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc Architect Built". The large figures on the roof of Notre-Dame are not of course visible in detail to the naked eye. But no one alerted to the visual presence of the restorer could miss his depiction as Adam on the trumeau of the north portal of the west facade. In this rendering of Eve handing the apple to Adam as the serpent looks on in the shape of an alluring woman, Viollet-le-Duc violated plays the role of the first man. Viollet-le-Duc was not the first restorer of the nineteenth century to show such a lack of modesty. Jean-Baptiste Lassus erected a statue of himself holding the medieval architect's square among the biblical figures on the roof of Sainte-Chapelle. And he left his name as architect of the Sainte-Chapelle on a sign affixed with thumbtacks to a post in the roof timbers of King Louis's Palatine chapel. And while we may be surprised at such a bold presence of the architect in the medieval building which he did not build, but merely restored, we should remember that without their intervention, the Gothic monuments of the 12th and 13th centuries might not have survived to the present day. There would in other words be no access to the age of cathedrals if it were not for those who participated like Lassus and Viollet-le-Duc in the revival of the Middle Ages that occurred in the middle of the 19th century. The cathedrals that were first erected some eight centuries ago have changed function over the years. From great religious shrines and testaments in stone to the profound dedication of the faithful, to great tourist destinations that attract hundreds of thousands and even millions of visitors from all over the world each year. At the same time, we have seen that gothic cathedrals are living organisms which like any house or public building require regular maintenance and at times major reconstruction. They are the survivors of a medieval world that is still recognisably our own.