At the foot of the Fourvière hill in the heart of Old Lyon, the Saint-Jean-Baptiste de Lyon Primate is better known as “Saint-Jean-Baptiste Cathedral” or simply Lyon Cathedral. It is the church of the Archbishop who is still Primate of the Gauls. On several occasions it has served as the setting for important events in France's history: the marriage of Henri IV and Marie de' Medici in 1600 or the ceremony for the presentation of the cardinal's biretta to Richelieu in 1622. Built on ancient churches whose ruins still exist, the present cathedral dates from the 12th century and has been modified over the ages.
Its gothic naves, Roman choir, and side chapels bear witness to these successive additions, like its nine-metre-high astronomical clock, which dates from the 14th century.
Its facade is an iconic setting for the Festival of Lights, which is held each year in December. During this event, the architectural details of the cathedral, and most notably its central rose window, are illuminated and highly staged by a spectacle of light and sound.
Saint-Jean-Baptiste Primate Cathedral
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