/ / Cologne Cathedral: photos, description (Dom)

Cologne Cathedral: photos, description (Dom)

Cologne Cathedral is located in the heart of the city, close to main station. Two pointed spire of the Cathedral has already become a kind of "calling card" of Cologne. The Cathedral itself, the maximum height of 157 meters is the third tallest religious building in the world. Its construction started in 1248, was delayed for several centuries the Cathedral was officially completed in 1880, but according to legend, its construction will never end, otherwise there'll be promised to the devil end of the world.

Cologne Cathedral is consecrated in honour of St. Peter and is considered a masterpiece of Gothic architecture. In the center of its nave is the main Shrine of the whole Cologne - the Golden casket where the relics of the three Magi. For sightseeing, the Cathedral opened its treasure, the most valuable and ancient Church utensils, robes, and more. And you can climb to the top of one of its towers - but it will have to overcome the 509 steps of the spiral staircase.

The history of the construction

The first sacral building on the site of Cologne Cathedral appeared in the VI century. The Foundation is represented in the crypt of the Cathedral where there are ongoing archaeological work. Also the remains of one of the chapels of the times of the Carolingians, which can be seen in the courtyard. Complete the construction of a new Cathedral began in 1248. This coincided with two important factors - first, in Cologne still was not the Cathedral that was very blow to the prestige of this city, and secondly, in 1168 Cologne received from the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa the most important Christian relic - the sacred relics of the three Magi.

The new Cathedral was built on the example of French cathedrals. In order that more light passed inside of the Cathedral, was erected elegant pilasters, and the high vaults supported by a complex system consisting of a powerful buttresses and pointed arches, surmounted by a Golden cross. After 70 years were completed finishing in the choir, around which runs a gallery with a lot small private chapels. In the centre of the choir is the main altar made of black marble. From the XIV to the XV century, was the construction of the South tower, but it remained unfinished. At that time, its height should not exceed 60 meters. As for the Northern nave of the Cathedral, begun in the XVI century, it was only a frame building.

As such, the building lasted for several centuries, moreover during the French revolution around here for a while is a storehouse of fodder. Only in 1842 is not without the financial support of the Prussian king Friedrich Wilhelm IV finally started work on the completion of this protracted construction, in which participated eminent at that time, the architects Carl Friedrich Schinkel and Ernst Friedrich Tsvirner. The last stone of the Cathedral was laid in 1880, after 632 years after the start of construction. It is worth noting that two powerful towers was built according to the drawings 1300 years with surprising accuracy and, therefore, has retained its authentic medieval appearance. Also added were various neo-Gothic decorative elements, including stained-glass Windows. However, much had to be restored after the Second world war. Interestingly, miraculously, the Cathedral survived during the long bombing that destroyed almost the entire Cologne. It is believed that the pilots used it as a geographical landmark. Restoration works in the Cathedral are conducted and now.

The interior of the Cathedral: values, relics, burial

The main value of the Cathedral is the Golden casket with the relics of the three Magi, located in the heart of the building. It was built in 1220 and decorated with precious stones and cameos. I wonder what Lara is depicted the mysterious fourth wise man - king of Germany Otto IV of Brunswick, as itself to crush the three kings. Still kept in the Cathedral exquisite, hand-carved sculpture of the virgin and child, called Madonna of Milan. It was made in 1290, and re-painted in the nineteenth century. Even more ancient Christian value is the Gero cross, which is a six-foot oak cross. It dates back to X century and at that time was considered the largest crucifix in the whole of Europe. The image of Christ is placed in a luxurious Baroque altar, made in 1683.

The new Cathedral was postponed many ancient graves, Dating back to X-XII centuries. Among them, notably the tomb of Archbishop Gero, decorated with red and green porphyry and white marble. Interest is the sarcophagus of Philip Gansberghe, adorned with pointed crowns is due to the fact that this Archbishop involved with the ordinary people of Cologne in the construction of the city's defensive walls. Decently decorated tomb of Archbishop Conrad laid the first stone of a modern Cathedral in his honor was ustanovlen exquisite bronze statue. However, in the Cathedral presented and later tombstones, including, for example, is an amazing Baroque marble sculpture depicting Archbishop Engelbert, directed by the angel.

The Treasury of Cologne Cathedral

The Treasury of Cologne Cathedral is located in the underground areas in the Northern part of the building. Its walls are medieval foundations of the Cathedral, and some of the details of masonry has been preserved from the Roman fortifications. Subsequently, this old building was divided into floors, while the top was specially covered with a glass ceiling so that visitors could raise my head and admire the wonderful views of the Cathedral. A separate room is allotted for kiosk, where you can buy a variety of Souvenirs, including consecrated crosses and rosaries.

In the Treasury of Cologne Cathedral presented various rare objects of religious art, Church utensils, and robes, and even the Holy relics. The most ancient are the monstrance of St. Peter and his staff, decorated with a knob of the IV century, as well as the unique archeological finds of the era of the Merovingians. But only several centuries later was made the first ceremonial wands of the Cologne archbishops and other symbols of power.

In the Museum of the Cathedral is preserved the original wooden casket with the relics of the three Magi. Much attention is paid to medieval Gothic art and ancient manuscripts, another Department is reserved for a collection of luxurious garments archbishops and other Church officials. Among the exhibits stand out the rich vestments of the XVIII century. In addition, the Treasury represented by gold plated ornaments, silver cups, and objects of decorative art XIX-XX centuries.


  • Location: Domkloster 4
  • Nearest metro station: Dom / Hauptbahnhof"
  • Official website: www.koelner-dom.de
  • Opening hours: open daily from 06.00 to 21.00 from may to October, and until 19.30 from November to April, except during religious services.
  • Tickets: entrance to the Cathedral is free, Treasury, EUR 6, an observation deck on the tower - 4 euros.