- By early Tuesday morning, the massive fire that ravaged the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris was contained, hours after the flames first erupted on Monday evening.
- On Monday, images from the outside of the more than 800-year-old cathedral revealed a roof aflame.Shocking videos captured its iconic spire collapsing.
- Photos taken Tuesday offer a glimpse the inside of the cathedral.
- The architectural, historical, and artistic wonder, has become a symbol not only for Catholics but also for Parisians as a whole.
- Visit INSIDER.com for more stories.
The massive fire that broke out and burned well into the night at the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris on Monday evening was “completely under control,” as of early Tuesday morning, according to authorities. It is now fully extinguished.
Images from the outside of the more than 800-year-old cathedral revealed a roof aflame, and shocking videos captured its iconic spire collapsing. Now, several photos offer a glimpse of the inside of the cathedral.
Construction of the Notre-Dame Cathedral began in 1163; it took more than a century to build and was finished in the 13th century. The cathedral, an architectural, historical, engineering, and artistic wonder, has become a symbol not only for those practicing Catholicism but also to Parisians and visitors from around the world.
The fire, which is believed to have started in the attic of the cathedral, broke out at around 6:30 p.m. local time Monday. Around 400 firefighters worked to contain the flames; officials said one was seriously injured.
There is still much that is unknown about the fire, including what started it, and the extent of the damage inside of the cathedral (paintings, sculptures, the organs, and more).
Here’s what photos from the inside of the cathedral show thus far.
Firefighters doused flames from the burning Notre-Dame Cathedral as people looked on in Paris on Monday evening.
The fire consumed part of the roof, and the iconic spire collapsed due to the fire.
The flames engulfed the roof.
The fire completely demolished the wooden frame of the building within the stone exterior.
Smoke is seen inside of the cathedral’s nave.
A photo from Reuters shows smoke in the nave, or main body of the cathedral. Smoke is visible around the altar.
A closer look shows the altar surrounded by smoke.
The cross and altar, along with the sculpture of Pieta by Nicolas Coustou, are more visible along with smoke in this photo from the Associated Press.
A view of the entrance to the cathedral shows it largely intact.
Jordan Fischer, a digital investigative reporter at WUSA, gave a closer look at what can be seen inside the cathedral:
One of the first photos from the interior of #NotreDame from Reuters' Philippe Wojazer shows the altar's cross illuminated by spotlight, with the Coustous' Pietà seemingly unharmed underneath. The statue was one of the few that avoided mutilation during the French Revolution. pic.twitter.com/xffIWXa1ax
— Jordan Fischer (@JordanOnRecord) April 15, 2019
The glow of flames could still be seen inside of the cathedral early on Tuesday.
The flames were finally extinguished after the fire burned for 9 hours.
Large chunks of the cathedral’s glorious vaulted ceilings had burned through.
The hulking framework of wooden beams that supports Notre-Dame is composed of huge pieces of timber, which is ripe for catching light, Business Insider’s Hilary Brueck explained.
The supports are even called a “forêt” (or forest) because they’re enormous pieces of oak. This “charpente” (or frame) was built from 1,300 oak trees, enough wood to fill more than 21 hectares of land, La Tribune reported.
The fire burned holes through the vaulted ceiling. From inside the cathedral on Tuesday, you could see the sky.
The New York Times reported that the wooden roof structure was not equipped with sprinklers.
Source: The New York Times
A zoomed out photo shows the holes in the roof and rubble below in the nave.
Officials are just beginning their investigation into what caused the fire.
“Nothing at this stage suggests a voluntary act,” Rémy Heitz, a prosecutor in Paris, said, according to The New York Times.
It is believed that the fire began in the attic; an alarm sounded at 6:20 p.m. local time, but even after an initial check, the fire wasn’t found until a second alarm went off 23 minutes later, The Times reported.
Source: The New York Times
Many of the famed glass windows appeared to be safe.
“It seems they have not been destroyed for now, although we’ll have to see what real state they’re in, and whether they can be restored properly,” Maxime Cumunel, secretary general of France’s Observatory for Religious Heritage, told Reuters, of the stained glass windows, including the famed rose windows.
Notre-Dame’s iconic spire toppled during the blaze.
Videos captured the fateful moment:
— Wladimir Garcin-Berson (@vladogb) April 15, 2019
Rescuers reportedly formed human chains to pull as many priceless relics out of the church as possible before they were destroyed.
According to the mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo, firefighters managed to rescue some relics from the cathedral, including “linen fabric associated with Saint Louis, the Holy Crown of thorns and the cathedral’s treasury,” The New York Times reported.
Sixteen bronze statues had been removed last week as part of the ongoing renovation work.
Authorities scrambled to store the saved treasures in this room at Paris city hall, which is across the street from the church.
The cathedral’s two towers seemed to have survived the blaze.
The fire chief Jean-Claude Gallet said he believed “that the two towers of Notre-Dame have been saved,” referring to the two iconic towers at the front of the cathedral.
“We now consider that the main structure of Notre-Dame has been saved and preserved,” he continued.
The towers looked sturdy from the outside on Tuesday. But the wooden frame of the cathedral is “still precarious.”
The weight of the waterlogged wooden structures still poses a serious threat to the building’s integrity, expert Philippe Charlier told Business Insider France.
“The wood has been drying out over roughly 800 years and, as a result, it was relatively ‘light,'” Charlier said. “It’s now completely saturated with water.”
“The cathedral appeared to be structurally sound, officials said, after an inspection,” The Times reported on Tuesday.
French President Emmanuel Macron has promised the cathedral will be rebuilt.
“We will rebuild it,” he said in a Tweet on Monday night. “All together.”
It will likely take years to rebuild.
Luckily, some of France’s richest residents and biggest companies have pledged over $US675 million to rebuild the cathedral.
By Tuesday afternoon, Bernard Arnault, François-Henri Pinault, the Bettencourt family, French oil giant Total, Crédit Agricole bank, and L’Oreal had all joined the cause.
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