Geneva Saint Peter's Cathedral (Saint Pierre Cathedral)
Switzerland, Geneva

St. Peter's Basilica Geneva (Saint-Pierre Cathedral) is located in the center of Geneva, in the Cité district. The cathedral is one of the most famous and visited attractions of the capital of Switzerland. Christian temples and baptistery in this place have existed since the IV century. The construction of St. Peter's Basilica began in 1160 and was completed in 1252. Initially, the temple was built in the Romanesque style, later, in the process of rebuilding and reconstruction, elements of Gothic architecture were added. The main temple building has a length of 64 meters, huge stone blocks are located in the side aisles - gravestones of church dignitaries of the XV - XVI centuries. Later, the North and South towers were built, in which you can climb the spiral staircase and enjoy the views of Geneva from the observation deck. In 1406, the Makkoviev Chapel was added to the cathedral, the interior of which is decorated with a Gothic-style ornament; in 1407, the Clement bell was cast and installed, the largest of the bells of the cathedral weighing more than 6 tons. In 1441, the north wall of the nave was seriously damaged and restored only by 1449. The cathedral was rebuilt several times, up to the 18th century. In 1752 - 1756, a neoclassical facade was built by the architect Benedetto Alfriieri. To date, the building of the Cathedral of Saint-Pierre is a harmonious blend of several architectural styles. Until 1535, the cathedral was a Catholic church, but during the Reformation, Catholicism was banned, and the temple became Protestant. Since that time, the temple began to be called St. Peter's Basilica. Closely connected with his story is the life and work of the church reformer and founder of Calvinism, Jean Calvin. Between 1536 and 1538, Calvin lectured on the New Testament within the walls of the cathedral, and at the same time he wrote a brief summary of his views on the Catechism reformation. In the temple, and now next to the pulpit, there is a triangular wooden chair, which is known as the "Calvin chair." The initial decoration of the interiors of the temple was not preserved. During the Reformation, altars, statues and icons were destroyed in the cathedral, organs were broken, and wall paintings were covered with whitewash. Only a huge pulpit and stained glass windows have survived. Large-scale restoration work was carried out in the XIX - XX centuries, during which the archaeologist Charles Bonnet excavated the basement floors of the cathedral. For all the time archaeologists have discovered more than 200 levels of buildings, including the protohistorical and Roman periods. Now they are open to the public, the route begins from the III century BC and ends with the XII century - the time of construction of the Cathedral of Saint-Pierre.

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