Quick Facts on Trier Cathedral
Description of Trier Cathedral
The cathedral's interior combines a Romanesque structure with baroque decoration and Gothic vaulting and archways. It is laid out as a triple-nave, two-choir basilica with a transept and six towers.
Portions of Constantine's church can be seen in a central section, with the original walls rising up to a height of 26 m (86 ft). Just outside a door on the south side of the church is a huge piece of a granite column from Constantine's church.
Over the south door (on the inside) is a magnificent Romanesque tympanum depicting Christ between the Virgin and St. Peter. Other outstanding artworks include the tomb of the papal envoy Ivo (1144) in the south aisle, which has Romanesque carvings of a dragon-like creature and a human head peeking out, and the tomb altar of Archbishop Richard von Greifenclau (1531).
For pilgrims to Trier, the cathedral's central attraction is the Holy Robe (Der Heilige Rock) of Christ. The relic is enshrined in a reliquary housed in the baroque Chapel of the Holy Robe, located behind the altar. You can just get a glimpse of the large shrine, and much of the splendid Chapel remains hidden as well.
Another important relic is the Holy Nail, believed to be one of those used in the Crucifixion; it is on display in the Treasury. The Trier Cathedral Treasury (Schatzkammer), located on the south side of the choir near the Holy Robe, contains many important works of art. Among the exhibits are chalices, bishops' treasures, and the 10th-century St. Andrew's Altar, an unusual portable altar covered with gold and ivory.
October 8, 2011
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