Archive for the ‘Fourth of July’ Category

Notre Dame

Thursday, July 5th, 2012

Yesterday, we visited Notre Dame and the two islands.  Notre Dame was magnificent.   It was constructed between 1163 and 1345 and replaced an old cathedral in order to better match Paris’s expansion and power (  The gothic style with its flying buttresses and the stain glass windows are an impressive feat.  However, I am curious about if the reason for the extensive time it took to build Notre Dame was not only due to technology.  Also, because there were different people in charge over construction over 200 years, I wonder if they made distinct changes to the design.

Professor Smith then gave us an assignment to find government buildings, which is easy to do since the island was the heart and fortress of Paris.  I found the Hôtel-Dieu de Paris, which was the first hospital in Paris, founded in 651.  Unfortunately, much of the building was destroyed in a fire in 1772 and was then rebuilt  Today, it is still considered a quality hospital (

The second, smaller island was originally only used for farm land, until it was given to the church.  Then, it was sold and became an area of expensive apartments and shops (and good ice cream!).  After class, we tried to see if we could go up Notre Dame, but the line was already cut off for the day.

Yesterday with the 4th of July, but I almost forgot! To celebrate, we decided to have hamburgers and hot dogs for dinner in honor of America at a French restaurant.  We tried to talk to our waiter  about Independence Day, but he did not understand what we were talking about.


the French even make AMAZING hamburgers!