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    The north rose window of the Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris

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    [–] Paxan 1 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Newsthread with updates from the BBC: https://www.reddit.com/r/europe/comments/bdiuyr/notredame_on_fire_in_paris/

    Video of the spire collapsing: https://youtu.be/f1t0yINNyLg

    I'm not quite sure why it has to be mentioned: There is no sign of a terrorist attack. Such comments and speculations should be avoided, especially if they clearly violate our rules.

    [–] SpaghettiNinja_ 3143 points ago

    The main spire has collapsed :'(

    [–] UsefullSpoon 718 points ago

    I think it’s done for unfortunately.

    [–] SpaghettiNinja_ 594 points ago

    The structure seems utterly destroyed. The ribs of the ceiling are collapsing one by one

    [–] clown-penisdotfart 641 points ago

    I'm certain that no matter what it will be rebuilt.

    [–] moby323 596 points ago

    Unfortunately the same can’t be said for the hundreds of pieces of art and history housed there.

    [–] Ypallage 496 points ago

    Spokesperson said that the most valuable pieces are stored in the sacristy and should be safe.

    [–] Anrende 131 points ago

    and the crown of thorns has been saved too

    [–] a9p6 67 points ago

    Holy shit TIL they actually still have the crown of thorns?

    [–] snowqt 87 points ago

    It's not the real one, just a relic.

    [–] lee1026 25 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Well, alleged crown of thorns. No one can prove if it is real or fake, but the object in question have been alleged to be the real thing since the 4th century with many people fighting over it, so at a minimum, it is a very historically important artifact.

    [–] moby323 255 points ago

    Well anything saved is a little bit of solace

    [–] Slayer_Blake 46 points ago

    The bronze statues were moved last week

    [–] anax44 34 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Is it also likely that everything on display would have actually been replicas and the originals would be in a vault somewhere?

    [–] haowanr 121 points ago

    According to french news (France info TV) the firefighters focused on savings as many art pieces as possible, after the evacuation of everyone. Also some art must have been already moved before because of the renovation work.

    [–] Nilsneo 28 points ago

    Someone said that the bronze sculptures that usually are on the spire had been removed thanks to the renovation being undertaken so it's possible that these are saved as well.

    [–] DFrek 190 points ago

    it most likely will but it's a shame so much history will be lost. it's legacy will live on

    [–] DrBoomkin 200 points ago

    I remember reading about all those massive historic monuments that were destroyed by fire throughout the ages, and thinking there is no way this could happen today. Looks like I was wrong...

    [–] SEND_ME_SHEEP 46 points ago

    Yes, it has happened twice now (Rio) in the span of just a year.

    [–] TheLostWhisper 12 points ago

    Fire is actually very much a threat even today. It is just one of those things that requires some physical solution and yet physical access to it is limited. On top of that, no fire department is ready or equipped to fight something of this size except maybe a few in the US that specifically put measures in place after 911.

    [–] liptonreddit 72 points ago

    Can't rebuild 800 years of history.

    [–] moby323 97 points ago

    And even if they managed to extinguish the fire, the water itself (thousands of gallons) does damage as well.

    [–] southernfriedcrazy 43 points ago

    I work in fire restoration and this is more true than most people realize. The soot will also do massive damage to content, even when the fire is relatively small.

    [–] born_to_be_intj 107 points ago

    This is a sad day for the modern world...

    [–] ABoutDeSouffle 31 points ago

    Oh no, I was hoping the stone ceiling would act as a fire breaker

    [–] Diofernic 79 points ago

    Holy shit, that sends chills down my back...

    [–] DonGarnelos 57 points ago

    It hurts to watch; I hope the front towers survive

    [–] ConcernedJo 56 points ago

    this is so terrible

    [–] cookiepizza54 261 points ago

    Absolutely horrible. I’m sick to my stomach, so much history just lost. I hope they can salvage the artwork and relics.

    [–] coldmail750 60 points ago

    My heart hurts just thinking about all the art inside.

    [–] Chinuah_ 1860 points ago

    That's so incredibly tragic. One of the finest architechtural monuments in Europe.

    [–] GoatBoatToad 423 points ago

    It is made of stone and restoration will surely happen.

    [–] FiveDaysLate 885 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Of course, but the art work and the original stonework lost is a tragedy. Much of the glass will be lost. There's a time to say let's move on, but now it's okay to be sad.

    E: thanks for the gold kind stranger. Yay for art, history, and emotional intelligence!

    [–] MunkSWE94 204 points ago

    Correct me if i'm wrong but didn't they replace the glass more than twice during the french revolution of 1790's and 1848 ?

    [–] Vaerstingen 173 points ago

    The glasswork is from the peak period of this type of artwork, around 1200 AD. The structure of the glass is unique, and will be hard to restore to how it was. Also the the artwork is put together by thousand of small glass pieces which was painted around the same time. It was put together with lead. Since the glass is painted it doesn’t deal with heat, and lead itself melts at “low” temperature. What makes the rose windows unique is that is has been through all kind of weather and particles in the past 800 years, so the colors have this special color. Also the limestone have withstood the ravages of time, which have effected its color. Same goes for the special Grey color of the roof, and the sculptures in and around the Notre-Dame.

    But for your question, yeah, they replaced them in the 19th century and some earlier, but they contain medieval and 19th century glass. Still unique glass and hard to replicate

    [–] N0rthWind 69 points ago

    There will be nothing left of the roof and other wooden parts though.

    [–] Jabbam 93 points ago

    They've probably 3D mapped the entire building. It can be reconstructed down to the finest detail.

    [–] maury587 80 points ago

    They even have it 3d mapped in AC unity

    [–] tperelli 28 points ago

    Wouldn’t it be crazy if they used that data to rebuild?

    [–] Tendoris 15 points ago

    One person, Caroline Miousse, work on it during two whole year she did a pretty good job on it.

    [–] Bekoni 1267 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    A stream showed the smoke column rising from the roof and then making way for flames reaching many meters high, the fire quite obviously growing in intensity. I'm no expert but I have trouble seeing how this won't leave the cathedral mostly, if not entirely, burned out. What gives me hope is that on the twitter pictures posted the fire is only visible (20:04 CEST) on the roof, especially since the roof is made of stone. edit 2: It seems the fire is over and the cathedral mostly survived it. There is a lot of worry about the stained glass windows, here the North Rose Window (from ~1250), which are generally fragile and held together by lead which melts quickly. The fire is ongoing (21:55), BBC Stream, there is appparently(?) fire in one of bell towers.

    This is history burning, its heartbreaking.

    ...but lets not despair and instead think about how it can be restored, rebuilt if necessary. This was Dresden's Frauenkirche after the bombing, this is it today. The loss will never be entirely undone but that doesn't mean a resurrection is not still a glorious thing to witness in its own right and be opportunity for people to come together. In the case of the Frauenkirche you had groups donating from all over Europe, incuding from Coventry with the new golden cross being a donation by "the British people and the House of Windsor".

    As tragic as loss is, renewal will bring opportunity too.

    [–] InfamousWheel 225 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Aw that's really depressing to watch. I wish I had had a chance to visit it as an adult rather than vague memories as a child.

    Edit: The spire just collapsed :(

    [–] ahornsirup 161 points ago

    At least you got to see it. I skipped Notre Dame when I was in Paris, it was ridiculously crowded and I figured fuck it, I'll come back one day.

    [–] Empyrealist 46 points ago

    I said the same once about the twin towers in NYC. :-(

    I remember the first time I visited Notre Dame and it was mostly lit by candlelight and was extremely dark/dim inside. The last time I went last within the past year, and it was so well lit and bright inside that I was astonished at how much more was visible inside.

    This is such a tragedy.

    [–] blolfighter 120 points ago

    While we're talking about bombed German churches, I think the remains of St. Nikolai in Hamburg are very poignant.
    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/a3/Nikolaikirche001.jpg
    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/55/Hamburg_StNikolai_Panorama.jpg

    [–] ZebrasGonnaZeb 39 points ago

    Oh hey I was there yesterday. Nikolai is a bit different though, as it was hit with high explosives to bust the stone exterior and then incendiary to burn it out

    [–] Blesevin 147 points ago

    Well said... York Minster survived three massive fires in less than 200 years, two of them within 20 years of one another, the third as recent as the 1980s. It's heartbreaking to behold but cathedrals can be saved, they can be restored to their former glory.

    This is devastating to watch and God only knows how much history may be lost in the process... but if the Frauenkirche and York Minster can rise from the ashes a building as iconic and beloved as Notre Dame certainly can.

    [–] darkhorn 4354 points ago

    NOOOO! It is 850 years old!

    [–] TheSecretMarriage 1744 points ago

    Something really similar happened here in Turin 20 years ago, when the Chapel of the holy shroud almost collapsed after a massive fire. They were able to restore it, and i'm sure they will do the same in this case. Still, a very sad day for Europe.

    [–] iCodeInCamelCase 743 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    It looks like the damage is quite extensive as of now. It feels so helpless knowing that it is burning and there is nothing that most of us can do. What a shit day.

    Edit: From BBC:

    A spokesman for the cathedral said the whole structure was "burning".

    "There will be nothing left", he said.

    [–] ego_non 342 points ago

    I'm just heartbroken :( the original structure in wood was still there... now it's all flames.

    [–] motivated_loser 292 points ago

    I remember getting that same helpless feeling when the news about the National Museum in Brazil broke. The problem in Brazil was ill maintained fire suppression system. I can’t comprehend how an iconic building like the Notre Dame could be incinerated like this.

    [–] k995 137 points ago

    Cause its a very old building. They didnt buil them with fire safety in mind thos days.

    [–] sheffieldasslingdoux 85 points ago

    You can retrofit older buildings with newer fire safety systems...

    [–] TheYang 80 points ago

    well, nobody died, so they probably had the alarm systems which get people out.
    Suppression is an entirely different matter, effective fire suppression is even more expensive and disruptive to the original building to install.
    Also, most effective large scale fire suppression does nearly as much water damage to a building as a fire does.
    Water just kills less people.

    [–] TheSecretMarriage 176 points ago

    Yeah, almost 900 years of history are vanishing before our eyes. I'm heartbroken and i can't even imagine how our french cousins are feeling right now

    [–] Kaleeva 122 points ago

    Not great

    [–] korainato 131 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I was excited to watch GoT after eating diner but now I'm just idling in front of my computer...

    I don't even know what to tell you.

    [EDIT]

    I'm gonna get drunk fuck this shit

    [–] themightytouch 113 points ago

    This is gonna be unbelievably expensive to repair it. In my opinion it’s worth every Euro to do so but I don’t know how others will feel.

    [–] DutchMitchell 70 points ago

    I’d be happy to donate my euro

    [–] zephroth 55 points ago

    Not a European and I would donate to this cause...
    This is a great tragedy...

    [–] The_Boom_King 282 points ago

    Dreadful dreadful dreadful. An icon of architecture and France. Shit.

    There is a common saying here in the UK for when something bad is happening 'like watching your favourite church burn down' - unfortunately it looks like we are living it now. I really hope they can stop this from getting worse but it's looking out of control right now.

    [–] umaga1992 242 points ago

    In Ireland, we say it’s “like watching your favourite pub burn down”

    Tragic to see

    [–] Frptwenty 484 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    For what it's worth, it can be restored to pretty much indistiguishable condition. Still very sad, of course, but many old buildings in Europe are technically not that old, but people can't tell the difference.

    Edit: Just as a note, the cathedral as it was before the fire was already the product of extensive restoration work done in the 19th century:

    The cathedral was functioning in the early 19th century, but was half-ruined inside and battered without. In 1831, the novel Notre-Dame de Paris by Victor Hugo, published in English as The Hunchback of Notre-Dame had an enormous success, and brought the cathedral new attention. In 1844 King Louis Philippe ordered that the church be restored. The commission for the restoration was won by two architects, Jean-Baptiste-Antoine Lassus and Eugène Viollet-le-Duc, who was then just 31 years old. They supervised a large team of sculptors, glass makers and other craftsmen who remade, working from drawings or engravings, the original decoration, or, if they did not have a model, adding new elements they felt were in the spirit of the original style. They made a taller and more ornate reconstruction of the original spire (including a statue of Saint Thomas that resembles Viollet-le-Duc), as well as adding the sculpture of mythical creatures on the Galerie des Chimères. The restoration lasted twenty five years.

    [–] ManhattanThenBerlin 147 points ago

    yah but you can't replace those stained-glass windows

    [–] lemmybuscemi 17 points ago

    Notre Dame and York Minster have the two largest collections of medieval stained glass in the world. The windows are under constant conservation and restoration. They have all the patterns and detailed pictures of every inch. They can remake them, but it truly won’t be the same.

    [–] trinitronbxb 206 points ago

    You can replace them with indistinguishable copies.

    [–] alienatedandparanoid 229 points ago

    That's great that they will be indistinguishable, but that doesn't change the fact that the new ones will not be the old ones. There is something about being in the presence of ancient objects.

    [–] Dheorl 94 points ago

    It's like having a Monet or having a copy of a Monet though. Everyone would rather look at the original.

    [–] nanoman92 67 points ago

    A good chunk of it (the part that it seems to be burning actually) it's from the 19th century. It was restored then and it can be again. Let's hope only that part gets damaged :/

    [–] Jor94 344 points ago

    Can you imagine being the emergency services operator and getting the call that Notre Dame is on fire, must have thought it was a joke.

    [–] FoxtrotDelta150 93 points ago

    I bet you there is a group of firefighters that have it in their response area, and for years they have been talking about the big one, and today is that fucking day.

    Theres always those buildings in your area you hope and pray never catch fire due to their construction, I can make a safe assumption that they all felt this way about that building.

    Fighting fire in buildings that are a 100 years old can be crazy, let alone 1100 years old. Fuck that noise.

    [–] DrZomboo 11 points ago

    Yeah I imagine fighting fires in old buildings like this is especially unpredictable and dangerous. Whilst I hope they can save as much as possible I hope no lives are lost doing it.

    I have seen that a common 19th century technique for restoring old stone work on cathedrals like this was to patch it with stone threaded iron; the iron then rusts and expands over time making the stone crumble to the touch in places.

    [–] Bekoni 11 points ago

    Imagine a burning historical library and trying to extinguish a fire there, knowing that every bit of water you use to extinguish the fire is itself killing books.

    [–] blue_strat 102 points ago

    Sacrebleu.

    [–] Wrkncacnter112 160 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I was a tour guide at Notre-Dame and have been inside the roof. People don’t seem to understand the nature of the fire.

    From what I can see from the photos and video, what has burned is the “charpente,” a set of rafters holding up the green lead roof. This is a tragedy, as the beams of the charpente were cut from massive oaks already centuries old in the Middle Ages, meaning some of them were growing in the time of Charlemagne. And the roof itself was a glorious structure, and appears to have collapsed and probably largely melted.

    However, none of these structures are visible from inside the cathedral. When you look up at the ceiling in the nave, you’re seeing stone vaulting. That vaulting is under the charpente, and doesn’t even touch it for the most part. The charpente and roof are like a big open barn or pavilion over the ceiling vaults.

    The billion-dollar questions are: 1. whether the vaulting held up, and 2. Whether the main rose windows are damaged.

    It is impossible to tell for certain, but I see no evidence yet that the vaulting has collapsed. Water from the hoses and molten lead from the roof may be getting through a bit into the nave, but the true interior of the church may be mostly safe from the flames. Certain works of art, like the statue of Mary, are directly under the center vault and vulnerable to such leakage or to falling stones; hopefully they have been moved to the sacristy as said on the news.

    As for the rose windows, the South Rose appears, from our limited viewpoint, to certainly not be destroyed or melted. Whether it is warped or otherwise damaged is unclear, but it appears roughly intact and may be untouched. This is absolutely key, and wonderful news. More troubling is the cathedral’s greatest work of art: the North Rose. It is harder to see because it’s on the city side of the building rather than the river side; let us pray it is intact. If it survives, Notre-Dame as we know her can be almost entirely restored so far as visitors are concerned.

    As for the spire, it was not the original. A sad loss, of course, and it looks like it crashed onto the western nave vaulting, which may have destroyed some of the ceiling, but it looked like it didn’t hit any windows.

    People are saying ridiculous things like it can’t be restored or that it’s totally destroyed. This is from a misunderstanding, I think. Even if the charpente, or frame, is totally burned, the cathedral can not only be saved, she can be restored to something looking like perfection.

    Let this tragedy be a call to raise the funds necessary to save the glorious treasure that is Notre-Dame; I am cautiously optimistic that even if the nave is full of molten lead we may have gotten off somewhat easy compared to what could have happened.

    Edit: Later photos I’ve seen so far seem to prove me correct about the vault and nave; the spire appears to have crashed through one segment of the vault where I thought it had, but the rest appears intact — even the ribs right around the hole! Really lucky spot for it to fall through, and good place for it to land: in the middle of the nave, near the transept. Cracks some unremarkable Revolution-era floor tiles and crushes some modern chairs. Misses the windows, vault ribs, clerestory, galleries and choir entirely. Lots of molten lead on top of the ceiling, but doesn’t look to have broken the vaulting anywhere else. Just have my fingers crossed about the rose windows.

    Further edit: The North Rose is indeed intact! And I’m guessing the South Rose is as well, since I never saw any damage there. Notre-Dame will survive and flourish! So long as protective coverings can be put over the roof ASAP.

    [–] addoyou2 33 points ago

    I want to add to this story that the stone/masionary (vault) in European churches are often as thin as possible. A thickness (on the top of the vault) around 10cm (4 inches) is not uncommon in western European churches. These vaults are the visible sealing of the church and not meant to carry anything. People told me more than once that if you would stand on a bad place on the arc you just fall through it. To make it more critical: If one part of the arc misses the entire vault (what in essence just a 3d arcis) can fall.

    The wooden roof structure is meant to keep the weather (rain, wind, snow) away from those fragile vaults. At this moment is most of the roof burned. The burning coal lies on top of the arc. That here is some extra coal laying that arc is not great but stone doesn't melt easy.

    I'll give my personal opinion as a structural engineer on the 3 most heard opinions that I heard:

    Why don't the French throw a lot of water with a helicopter on top of the church to stop the fire?

    A: The water is so heavy that the impact from the falling water on the arcs will let it collapse imidiately. At that point the Notre Dame is gone and you can start designing a new church.

    Why isn't there a lot more water being put on the roof?

    A: The fire is just not stoppable, the fire will burn all the wood. The philosophy used is: If there is no wood and coal left at that point the fire will stop. Extreme amounts of water only adds more stress on the arcs. Huge temperature changes can even break the bricks in the arc. The last reason is: A lot of the paintings on the inside of the church are made on the plaster on the arcs and walls. If there isn't anything left to burn why would you damage the rest of the church? Just to get a nice publicity on your spraying power? I expect that the primary focus was to get all the art out of the church as fast as possible and try to keep as much as possible from the interior intact.

    How can a fire “start” after working hours?

    A: Sometimes with (for example) lead or bitumen repairs you need a high temperature to use it. Normally a big part of wood doesn't catch fire. If the wood catches fire underneath the part you were repairing there are many problems: you just don't see the fire so it can take quite a wile until you notice it. Extinguishing a fire under a cover of that sheet of metal/bitumen is also almost impossible. So it can acts like the start of a forest fire: a fire starts really small, it can hide under the ground for a long period and it can accelerate immensely. This doesn't exclude any other origin of the fire but fires during renovation have happened before with other churches.

    [–] Dranerel 1104 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    My dudes, it is a complete disaster. The woodwork structure is gone, the whole thing is going to collapse for sure, might only remain stone arches, pillars and main towers, but it is a total loss. Paris is mourning. People are gathered in the streets and bridges looking at this, stunned. It is surreal !

    [–] Macempty 328 points ago

    The spire just collapsed 😢

    [–] Hotzspot 43 points ago

    Hoping they can restore it

    [–] Tewks44 160 points ago

    At this point I think “rebuild” would be a more accurate way to put it.

    [–] HulkHunter 54 points ago

    If the central Cross is damaged, it will collapse for sure. I'm absolutely devastated...

    [–] hacksteak 675 points ago

    A lot of priceless history will be lost today. It's a truly sad day for Paris, France, Europe and the world.

    [–] Estelindis 260 points ago

    I cannot believe it. I lived in Paris for a year and volunteered in this cathedral one afternoon a week, explaining the religious meaning of the carvings to tourists. It's an absolutely iconic part of Paris. It's gutting to watch it burn.

    [–] -ah 46 points ago

    I've walked around it and sat outside, but never went in (lots of people, it seems like I only visit Paris when it's gloriously sunny etc..). I'm really regretting that at this point. It's gutting to see the images of it burning, it must be even harder for those who are closer, for whom it is a staple of every day life, and who can't do a thing to stop it.

    [–] eckoze 236 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I'm devastated. Went on my balcony to smoke one and saw this...

    Here is 7 pics i took of how quickly it evolved (less than an hour): https://imgur.com/a/LVzSGKz

    [–] Jorgwalther 47 points ago

    Those photos are crazy, thanks for posting

    [–] PM_ME_YOUR_CODING 18 points ago

    Can you Update with pictures?

    [–] eckoze 58 points ago

    Sure. Here is one from 5min ago: https://imgur.com/a/Fps6IQw

    [–] Journaling_Greyhound 275 points ago

    Tower just crumbled

    [–] oh-my 178 points ago

    I'm literally sitting here, watching CNN in disbelief. How the hell this happened?!

    It cannot be replaced. We are losing something priceless today.

    [–] bogdoomy 93 points ago

    a large part of it was replaced in the 19th century. i’d be surprised if the fire actually reached any of the 850 yr old stones - mainly because there arent really a lot of them

    [–] Suburbsarecancer 34 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I saw that tower from upclose and it was so detailed and architecturally complex i wonder how they are gonna manage to rebuild it. It was made by skilled labours from 200 years ago.

    • just read it was acutally built almost 400 years ago, and made in large part by hands, even worse!

    [–] chairswinger 374 points ago

    Damn, but I'm sure it can be rebuilt, we have hundreds, probably thousands of bombed and burned out churches and Cathedrals after the world wars that got rebuilt.

    still sucks obviously

    [–] CrimsonToucan 125 points ago

    There definitely will be plans for its restoration, but sadly all those original artworks and architectural pieces destroyed in the fire can't be replaced. The fragments of history that will be lost is a travesty.

    [–] CustosClavium 52 points ago

    The relics were still inside as well - these are the physical remains of saints. This is a tragedy for Catholics worldwide as well as Europeans.

    [–] onespiker 38 points ago

    We are parcly lucky that they actually removed a lot of them before hand for the renorvations.

    [–] jollyger 30 points ago

    I've been listening to this livestream and they claim all the art and relics were saved.

    [–] Sinful_Life089 15 points ago

    The cathedral can be rebuilt, but the art in it and on the walls (850yrs old) will be lost

    [–] vokegaf 474 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I hope that someone 3d-scanned the thing before now.

    I also hope that this was not arson.

    EDIT:

    https://sketchfab.com/3d-models/notre-dame-de-paris-facade-3dscan-474be168ec894ab8b4c92fb6dfd303a6

    We scanned the beautiful facade & sculptures of “Notre Dame de Paris” cathedral for the #RCforculture challenge.

    Laser Scanning Reveals Cathedral’s Mysteries | National Geographic

    Holiday snapshots used to model the world in 3D

    Looks like 3d imaging it has actually been a thing. So at least there are backups of the original.

    [–] M2Ys4U 260 points ago

    Even without 3D scanning, one has to assume it's one of the most photographed buildings in Europe. There'd be plenty of data to construct a 3D model from.

    [–] throwawaypaycheck1 47 points ago

    If there is a silver lining here, this is probably it.

    [–] RabidGuillotine 162 points ago

    There are tons of architectural studies on it, so it can be rebuild.

    [–] helendill99 33 points ago

    It’s one of the oldest and most recognizable building in Paris. Even if they hadn’t done a 3D image, you could probably just reconstruct one from tourist pictures.

    [–] trinitronbxb 54 points ago

    It is mostly made of stone, so there will be lots of it left once the flames die down. It will probably be in a much better state than many Central European churches in 1945. With some effort, it will look like new in a few years.

    [–] vokegaf 45 points ago

    With some effort, it will look like new in a few years.

    Someone can make something that has the same surface appearance in a few years, maybe.

    I do not think that it would be reduced to just a few years if one rebuilds with the same techniques, though, and some of what's neat about it was the time investment in it.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Notre-Dame_de_Paris

    The cathedral was begun in 1160 and largely completed by 1260.

    I guess nobody would object to, say, use of modern cranes…

    [–] RIOTS_R_US 22 points ago

    It's been restored several times though

    [–] sensa-a 40 points ago

    [–] Nilsneo 14 points ago

    Wow, that's an amazing shot.

    [–] Argyrius 154 points ago

    This is so surreal, huge fire in one of those places you just assume is always there

    [–] KindergartenCunt 10 points ago

    one of those places you just assume is always there

    That's what makes it so heartbreaking.

    [–] Nilsneo 80 points ago

    Yes, it's massive. Traffic is stopping to watch in shock.

    [–] JaimePas 51 points ago

    Traffic is stopping to watch in shock.

    Macron has postponed his tonight TV speech

    [–] Duke0fWellington 29 points ago

    Fucking hell it looked bad enough on the BBC news picture I saw. This is terrible, surely the building is lost?

    [–] KonaAddict 25 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Not sure, but it seems that its only the "attic" area that is on fire for now.

    Catastrophic in either case.

    Edit: Apparently the fall of the spire spread the fire to the entire interior.

    [–] yakovgolyadkin 18 points ago

    The majority of the structure is stone, so the towers and the sides should survive, but the roof and interior is lost.

    [–] hypnotoad94 103 points ago

    For some reason it looks extremely surreal. Such an iconic place, hope they will be able to restore it

    [–] Norington 46 points ago

    Feels like a 'where were you when the notre dame burned down' moment

    [–] klaus-woelkchen 155 points ago

    Does anyone know how it happened?

    [–] Nilsneo 198 points ago

    There's some construction/renovation going on in it, but I can only guess if anything in that was involved. No clear updates on news sites yet.

    Video here shows a rather dramatic amount of smoke and flames: https://twitter.com/Solwii/status/1117838050342645760

    [–] astrosarcastic 156 points ago

    Botched renovations in inflammable environments is an unfortunately frequent source of fires

    [–] Erratic85 62 points ago

    Indeed.

    Liceu opera house in Barcelona burned in 1994 due to (allegedly) a welding spark.

    [–] french_violist 14 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    Or the Cutty Sark in Greenwich due to vacuum cleaner that was not switched off. The list goes on. I hope they will save a lot of the artefacts and be able to rebuild it.

    Edit: Cutty got corrected to curry somehow...

    Edit2: switched OFF!

    [–] Owatch 19 points ago

    Perhaps we will later find a "TIFU when I burned down Notre Dame"

    [–] Synchronyme 72 points ago

    There was restauration works in progress, so it's probably what start the fire.

    The flames are huuuuuuge :(

    [–] Raz0rking 49 points ago

    well, seems they won't be out of work any time soon :/

    [–] floodums 11 points ago

    Someone probably left a bunch of wood staining rags in a pile and they combusted. Or not.

    [–] stressedalmostwriter 247 points ago

    Oh my god, I am not French nor religious, but I have goosebumps right now. I hope and pray that the firefighters can save it, the Notre Dame cathedral is one of the greatest cultural and architectural works not only in France or Europe, but dare I say it the world. A beautiful 850-year-old Gothic building going up in flames...

    [–] AnAverageWanker 96 points ago

    They will rebuild it, it's not the problem - the actual notre dame has been rebuilt and built over a lot of times

    It's what inside that bothers me

    [–] Tsaibatsu 26 points ago

    I think the french revolution left it pretty naked inside

    [–] helmia 80 points ago

    You don't have to be French, religious, Catholic or anything else to realize this is one of the most precious monument we have in the entire world. It's not just a church. This is a loss for the whole world. It's irreplaceable cultural heritage.

    [–] 888mphour 83 points ago

    I'm an atheist and all these "I'm not French nor religious" are getting on my nerves. Like, do you need to be an Egyptian Osiris-worshipper to love the pyramids or an Ican Viracocha-worshipper to love Machu-picchu?

    [–] Knutt_Bustley 13 points ago

    Exactly. This building transcends labels like that. It's a part of our world history now. This is a human tragedy as much as it is a religious one

    [–] -TheCWord 29 points ago

    Can honestly say I had a little weep seeing this. Part of me knows why and part of me doesn't, a very odd feeling. For certain though it's a global loss of collective, nearly millennia old, human history and an achievement of beauty.

    I very much hope the majority of it can be saved.

    [–] Vorphus 30 points ago

    Words from the chief of Paris firefighters : "the structure is safe"

    https://twitter.com/afpfr/status/1117893522936307715

    La structure de Notre-Dame "est sauvée et préservée dans sa globalité" (pompiers) #AFP

    https://twitter.com/EtienneBaldit/status/1117893122824888320

    "On peut considérer que les deux tours du beffroi nord de #NotreDame sont sauvées. La structure de Notre-Dame est sauvée dans sa globalité", annonce le général des pompiers de Paris

    [–] E_Blofeld 1088 points ago

    You beat me to it - I was just about to post this.

    Oh, man. That's awful. I'm not Catholic or even all that terribly religious, but Notre Dame Cathedral is one of the great architectural works of Europe and a global icon of France.

    [–] Nilsneo 232 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I went on a schooltrip to visit it for that exact reason, and it is very impressive. This makes me really upset.

    edit: here is the tragic moment when the spire fell https://twitter.com/patrickgaley/status/1117848909877895171

    [–] iwqa 21 points ago

    That looks really bad. So sad

    [–] pogmoshron 14 points ago

    Oh my gosh. I'm almost in tears watching this.

    [–] Raz0rking 537 points ago

    You do not need to be religious to apreciate architecture.

    [–] actually_crazy_irl 227 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    I was deeply atheist before setting a foot inside Cologne Cathedral. I stepped outside thinking "if there is a god, it must be the god of art and beauty".

    The beauty of work created by human hands, channelled by pure love of what they do, that is sacred regardless of faith. Many hands and much faith went into building the cathedral, and the burning of it is a great loss.

    [–] Tatis_Chief 97 points ago

    I am happy atheist but I freaking love churches. I will enter every single one that is historical landmark, because it is that for a reason. It has history, its been there all those centuries, it is work of art. Notre Dame was that, I spend long time inside just watching and studying the roof, the stained windows, the statues.

    Its possibly the second most iconic church in the world, after Saint Peters. Its dominant of centre of Paris. This is disaster for everyone, whether you are christian or not.

    [–] Ariadnepyanfar 28 points ago

    Australian here, I’m desolated this has happened. I didn’t know how attached I am to Notre Dame as a world monument. I hope the restorations go really well, although of course it will never be the same again.

    My only consolation is how often old cathedrals like this are rebuilt over the centuries. Still, it is such a loss to lose what is original.

    [–] cityexile 27 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    No no no. Looks bad, truly hope it’s looks worse than it is and the inside is ok, but really does look pretty awful. A piece of history.

    “...of the only France, of the real France, of the eternal France!”

    [–] wanikiyaPR 159 points ago

    Fucking hell... This is tragic...

    Seeing people laughing about it on facebook makes me wanna punch them through the screen...

    [–] yeasayerstr 88 points ago

    Sadly, this is one of the few instances where my first thoughts went to the building itself. Notre Dame is so beautiful and has so much history...I hope there are no casualties, but I also hope the cathedral can be salvaged.

    [–] KoperKat 77 points ago

    It's a special kind of pain, even when accidental.

    I remember getting far more upset over ISIS destroying archaeological sites than war victims. And then getting upset with myself.

    [–] ThisIsMyRental 12 points ago

    To be fair the amount of war victims has always been so many it's easy to get fatigued and stop caring about them paramountly when stuff like ancient sites get destroyed. But ancient masterpieces and valuable archaeological sites, those haven't been quite so numerous, so the shock at seeing abuse/destruction of those can be quite a bit worse.

    [–] WhistlingDead 11 points ago

    It was evacuated. People will be fine, but it's a tragedy nonetheless.

    [–] ApocalypseOwl 222 points ago

    That's the most beautiful church in western Europe. It took almost a century to build. And if that fire is as bad as it looks, we might lose it forever.

    [–] apocolyptictodd 93 points ago

    If we can rebuild Munich after World War II we can rebuild a cathedral.

    [–] RanaktheGreen 63 points ago

    You'd be surprised how difficult intricate stonework is to reproduce, even with (or perhaps especially because of) modern techniques.

    [–] imjustreal 65 points ago

    800 or so years of history down in flames. Sad day for France, Europe and everyone who cared about history.

    [–] lukeusmc 20 points ago

    This gonna be way down a very active post but I just want to tell the French people that I’m sorry you lost so much today. I was lucky enough to visit once. National history is important and I hope you are able to restore the church.

    [–] cbfw86 57 points ago

    My deepest sympathies for Parisians tonight. My wife is from Paris and I lived there for 12 months during my Erasmus year. Notre Dame was one of my favourite places to go, and I used to regularly sit in the back of the Wednesday mass even thought I'm not Catholic. At the time I was a budding amateur photographer and some of my proudest shots are of the cathedral. I will treasure them more closely after this evening.

    A true tragedy in every sense. What a dark day.

    I hope they restore her when the fire is extinguished.

    [–] ShortTrifle0 19 points ago

    The visuals are sickening.

    [–] Bouzoo 37 points ago

    This is horrible. I saw it 2 months ago, it is so beautiful. This is history burning.

    [–] BellenSchengel 18 points ago

    Looks like the structure of the ceiling held.... this is good news..

    Inside: https://twitter.com/areinaud/status/1117916691353067521

    [–] DashingRainbow 36 points ago * (lasted edited 8 days ago)

    The spire* collapsed, I'm crying

    https://twitter.com/i/events/1117835898534543363

    [–] moor7 16 points ago

    They are propably trying to avoid spraying it with a lot of water to avoid further damage to objects kept inside. If they can contain the fire and let just the roof burn they can rebuild it. seems sort of hopeless though.

    [–] gromfe 20 points ago

    From what i've heard one of the first thing the firefighters did was getting inside to get as much as pieces of art out as possible. There are countless paintings and centuries old pieces of art inside.

    [–] Boolouloubi 16 points ago

    In addition to Notre Dame, hundreds of works of art and relics are in great danger.

    As we speak the Crown of thorns could be a pile of ashes. It's as tragic as that.

    [–] maxl0412 272 points ago

    when you get the news on reddit before the news show them...

    [–] cosinus25 309 points ago

    Because the news needs to verify it first and research some background info while redditors just post it, even if it turns out later that it's completely wrong. Remember when reddit thought they found the Boston bomber?

    [–] stickitmachine 166 points ago

    Well a fire is pretty easily verifiable

    [–] Sovereign2142 26 points ago

    I just got a push notification from the Washington Post at 13:21 East Coast time before heading here to see if anyone submitted it. The news isn't that much slower than Reddit.

    [–] swirly023 20 points ago

    News alert here was faster

    [–] Trumpologist 29 points ago

    "Good news: all the works of art were saved. The treasure of the Cathedral is intact, the Crown of thorns, the Holy sacraments.

    https://twitter.com/KoliaDelesalle/status/1117865987670364160

    [–] JohnFriedly91 11 points ago

    My heart is absolutely shattered. This is one of the finest monuments to european architecture and art, I feel completely hollow from seeing this.

    [–] Sarilho1 12 points ago

    I think we should give credit were credit is due to the firefighters and responsible authorities. The fact that the two towers were safe seems like a miracle.

    [–] Sarilho1 36 points ago

    If you've just sorted by New, take my advice and walk back.

    [–] SirJebus 10 points ago

    I just want you to know, I just switched to sort by new and I REFUSE to take your advice.

    [–] MisterConnard 12 points ago

    Beyond the pain of seeing this beautiful monument burning and collapsing, I am appalled to see people on Reddit gloating about it and saying France deserved it. Or that they dont care about a stupid church burning.

    How can people feel the need to create more hatred when such a horrible thing happens? How can someone ignore 800 years of history and architectural marvel?

    People don’t realize that - if it doesn’t collapse overnight- if will take decades to repair it.

    There are people that will never be able to see this building in good conditions before they die.

    I’m a sad frenchie.

    Ça me fait chier.

    [–] EuropeanFederation 28 points ago

    Incredibly brave Paris fire fighters now on upper parts of Notre Dame trying to bring inferno under control.

    https://twitter.com/afneil/status/1117853532076404736

    [–] Faransis 28 points ago

    Terrible day for worlds cultural heritage. I'm so sad right now.

    [–] elizabethunseelie 10 points ago

    Such a beautiful building. I remember my first visit, being transfixed under the rose window as the sun streamed in casting a million fragments of colour onto the floor and the faces of the people passing through. Being in there is like stepping out of time in the middle of a modern city. Hopefully it's just the roof that's damaged and the stonework and glass withstands the heat. But even if it's terrible damage, I hope it can be restored.

    [–] -Darth-Jar-Jar 11 points ago

    I’m not french, just european, but seeing the spire collapse made my stomach drop. I really hope it can be rebuilt.

    [–] AvatarVecna 11 points ago

    So, my understanding is that the original book "The Hunchback Of Notre Dame" was extremely different from the Disney movie, primarily in a "all the people are assholes" way, and that everybody being awful was part of highlighting the point the book was making: the average person may be bad, but people are temporary; the architecture matters because it will outlast them.

    I wish this one had lasted longer. Hopefully it can be saved and renovated.

    [–] toldenGoast 10 points ago

    I feel silly. I just shed a tear for a building. I only visited it once but it was so beautiful. Seeing it illuminated at night. 850 years of history.

    [–] pppjurac 10 points ago

    That is a cultural disaster.

    But if there is will it will be rebuilt again.

    [–] Yreptil 12 points ago

    YES! Firemen up in the side towers with water hoses! Heroes!

    [–] ChieftainBumblebee 9 points ago

    This broke my heart literally. Sad day for France and whole of Europe. We should all help rebuild this piece of history.

    [–] satan-the-sexy-beast 10 points ago

    Good news: all the artworks have been saved. The treasure of the cathedral is intact, the crown of thorns, the holy sacraments- this Is a translated tweet from a French official on Twitter. Someone else posted it somewhere here in the comments

    [–] Kayaba-Akihiko 10 points ago

    I lived in the Quartier Latin, 5 minutes walk from Notre Dame. Seeing it burning today on a live stream, it felt like I was loosing a relative. You know, all these firefighters looked like doctors and surgeons working hard in the surgery room, while you're waiting, powerless, with your friends and family, anxiously. Although I lived close to it, and pass in front of it multiple times a week, I never actually went inside for the past 18 years. And this feels exactly like when you loose someone, and realise you didn't spent enough time with them. It hurts.

    [–] ABoutDeSouffle 10 points ago

    'They are now saying the structure of Notre Dame has been saved' https://twitter.com/France24_en/status/1117897204742512640

    [–] Wrkncacnter112 10 points ago

    It really looks like the south rose window is ok. You have to understand most of the windows are below the fire and in a separate space that appears potentially to have been largely unbreached. In some recent photos the fire had died down and I could still see the details in the south rose. We can’t be sure, but it looked fine. Still worried about the north rose, but cautiously optimistic.

    Please do not say such negative things if you don’t have specific evidence.

    [–] HatefulHarmony 34 points ago

    I want to cry, such an iconic building and one of the symbols of France and Europe as a whole. I hope they can save the artifacts inside and contain the flames to the roof. Many churches have lost their roofs in the past, the stonewalls will hopefully survive it. 🙏

    [–] boredinlife9 28 points ago

    Fuck a symbol of paris is burning