We were on our way to the Netherlands now, but had to stop at Aachen and visit the cathedral which played such an important role in our history.
|Guided tour Corona version|
We had parked on the outskirts of the city in a very nice area next to a park from where it was a 25min walk into the centre. (50.761530, 6.071047)
Our recommendation: go straight to the information centre of the cathedral and buy a ticket for a guided tour. Otherwise you are not going to see the important parts.
In 1874, the Aachen Stiftkapitel allowed a scientific investigation of the remains of Charlemagne. The investigation verified that the remains were authentic and proved that he was exceptionally tall for his time and lived to an unusual old age.
The Throne of Charlemagne was made of stones which were used at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem before. The appearance of the throne and its location in the Palatine Chapel did not change with the passage of centuries. Between 936 and 1531, 31 German kings ascended to this throne after their anointment and coronation at the Marienaltar (Altar of Mary).
The original motive of the dome mosaic from around 800, with Christ as the triumphant world ruler surrounded by the symbols of the four evangelists, to which the 24 elders from the Apocalypse of John offer their crowns, was again executed around 1880/81 in Neo-Byzantine style by the Venetian workshop Antonio Salviati based on designs by Belgian architect Jean-Baptiste Bethune.
The Barbarossa Chandelier was made on the order of Emperor Frederick I, nicknamed Barbarossa, and his wife Beatrice sometime between 1165 and 1170 and was installed under the cupola of the Palatine Chapel. It was made of gilt copper in the form of a wheel chandelier. It has a diameter of 4.20 metres and is mounted on a roughly 27 metre long chain under the middle of the roof of the Palatine chapel. The circle of the wheel chandelier symbolises the city wall of the New Jerusalem. The stylised city wall of the chandelier contains eight large and eight small gate towers, which are arranged symmetrically.
To this day, clothes and jewellery are given to the figure of Mary as a thank you for passing the exam, as intercession for survival in the war or for other reasons. She was also given earrings, pocket watches, perfume bottles or smaller gold bars.
Mary is dressed differently about a dozen times a year, so that one rarely comes to the cathedral and Maria wears the same dress. In 2007 Maria had 41 dresses and “several 100” pieces of jewelry.