Tuesday, September 17, 2013


I felt a bit awkward going into the Cathedral Basilica wearing my missionary tag. But we were told that it was one of THE places to see in St Louis. We got there a little before the tour started. I took advantage of the time by taking pictures in the foyer.
There are several mosaics there depicting the life of King/St Louis of France.

St Louis before leaving for the Crusades.
I'd heard of the crusades, of course, but was excited to see someone who had actually gone. During his lifetime King Louis actually bought the crown of thorns worn by Christ from Emperor Baldwin ll in approximately 1239. King Louis died during his second crusade, in August 1270

From the back, looking forward.

 The mosaics are all on the upper part of the cathedral and the ceiling. They depict lives of people who have done good things in this life, the apostles, and special events.

This is looking toward the front doors.
The striped layers depict earth. We're down on earth. The people in the mosaics are in heaven.

The mosaics above were made by Tiffany Studios. They are my favorite. They have a soft look that gives them the appearance of tapestries.

The highest dome. Not seen from the outside.
The rest of the mosaics were constructed in the Byzantine style that uses the rich colors. The cathedral turns off the lights for tours because the lighting distracts from the beautiful mosaics. The white in the circle are windows letting filtered light. In the Byzantine style, the craftsmen put the glass down and before it's dry, they hammer it in places to make the tiles uneven. That's why the tiles with gold-leaf under them shimmer as in the picture above.

I was glad that we went. It was very interesting, and I can't remember it all. They have special events here throughout the year, including a Christmas choir. I'd love to go. I imagine the sounds would be breathtaking.

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