The Sainte Chapelle in Paris
On today’s episode we discuss the Sainte Chapelle in Paris. It was the King’s private chapel, and this one place in Paris that will make you feel like a king too. This should be on everyone’s top-10 for Paris, even for people who don’t enjoy visiting churches. The Sainte Chapelle has not been a church for a long time. Today it is used for concerts and is a popular place to visit.
On a sunny day, the Sainte Chapelle feels like walking into a kaleidoscope. The colors will overwhelm you and you’ll never look at stained-glass windows the same way. The kings knew things about light and color that we’ve since forgotten, and it’s a privilege to see them again.
The Sainte-Chapelle is not very big, it shouldn’t take you more than a couple of hours to see it all, but these are two hours you will never forget. So next time you’re in Paris go!
The Sainte Chapelle Episode
[02:00] The Sainte Chapelle is where Saint Louis displayed the Crown of Thorns. How much do we know about this relic, was it the real thing?
[03:20] They built this church for the exclusive use of the French King and his family. Louis IX a.k.a. Saint Louis was very pious and having precious relics in his possession was a sign that God favored his reign and that he was the legitimate ruler of France.
[04:00] The Gothic architectural style is what you will see in this church with tall stained glass windows and narrow stone pillars. Light reflections are an opening into paradise.
[06:00] Many visitors to Paris walk right past the entrance to the Sainte Chapelle and never go inside. We think you shouldn’t miss it and explain why. We recommend you get the Museum Pass which includes this attraction and plan on spending some time in the security line.
How Did they Build the Sainte Chapelle?
[07:00] The makers of this stained glass used a secret formula for some of their colors that we cannot reproduce.
[08:00] It’s a miracle that the stained-glass is still there. There is a video on the bottom level that shows you how they keep the stained glass pristine and safe through two World Wars and Occupations by the Germans.
[09:30] We think this is more beautiful even than Chartres Cathedral, but they are both marvelous in their own way.
[11:30] Practical considerations: How to get there, entrance fees, photos ARE ALLOWED now! How fit do you have to be for this visit? There are some stairs. There is an elevator but only if reserved ahead of time. This venue only offers guided tours in French. If you want a tour in English arrange it ahead of time. This visit is not ideal for small children.
Thank you listeners! In the comments we’d love to know if you’ve visited the Sainte Chapelle and how it made you feel.