/ / Basilique Notre Dame de La garde, (Basilique Notre-Dame-de-la-Garde)

Basilique Notre Dame de La garde, (Basilique Notre-Dame-de-la-Garde)

The white stone Basilica of Notre-Dame-de-La-garde, like hovering over the Marseille - this temple is located on top of a hill with a height of about 150 meters. The bell tower was the highest structure in the ensemble of the temple is located a gilded statue of the virgin and child. The virgin Mary is revered by the people of Marseille as the heavenly patroness of the city.

Earlier in the place of the temple stood a watch tower, since the top of the hill, a good view of the surrounding city, and the tower was clearly visible vessels, akin to Marcel.

The construction of the first Church on the hill began in 1214, the initiator of the Foundation of the Church was made by the local priest. After his death, the Church becomes part of a small monastery, and in the XV century was built a new Church building.

In the first half of the XVI century by order of king Francis I at Marseilles was built two fortress - Fort on the island of If (later described by Alexander Dumas in one of his novels) and the castle on the hill, whose membership includes the Church of our lady the guardian.

At the end of the XVIII century the Church was plundered and the castle became a place of confinement several notable prisoners, among whom were the Duke of Orleans and the Duchess Louise de Bourbonne. The temple was returned to the Catholic Church only in the early nineteenth century, in the middle of the century, work began on its restoration. In 1864 the Church was consecrated, but the recovery process continued until the end of the nineteenth century.

In the Basilica you can see the modestly removed the crypt (lower Church) and elegant, with bright and rich decoration of the upper Church. The upper Church is decorated with a mosaic depicting the Dormition of our lady and other mosaic, colored fragments which were imported from Venice, columns of red and white marble, is also made of white marble main altar.

In the lower Church there are two sculptures made of marble, created in the XIX century is the image of the Bishop of Marseilles de Maseno and Pope Pius IX. Behind the main altar you can see the statue of the virgin Mary of the XVIII century. The temple also stored the tablets with prayers of gratitude for the salvation that was left by the sailors who survived shipwrecks.