07 April 2012

Day 9 – The Münster of St. Vincent in Bern

One of the stops on our walking tour of Bern was the Cathedral of St Vincent.  (You can read more about the walking tour part 1, part 2 and part 3)

We arrived in Münsterplatz about 14:00 on 13 June 2011.  The outside of the gothic cathedral was very impressive but unfortunately they were busy with work on the tower and it was covered with scaffolding.  Construction of the cathedral began on 11 March 1421 and the Bell tower (the highest is Switzerland) was added in 1893.


The cathedral has three portals.  The Last Judgement in the center portal was amazing.  (We returned on 14 June to have a second look)  Some of the statues are copies of the originals.  We saw the originals at the Bern History Museum.

Wikipedia: Over the main portal is one of the most complete late gothic sculpture collections in Europe. This collection represents the Christian belief in a Last Judgement where the wicked will be separated from the righteous. This sculpture shows the wicked naked on the right, while the righteous stand clothed in white on the left. In the center is Justice, with Saints and the wise and foolish virgins  around her. In the center stands Micheal the Archangel with a raised sword.
Centre Portal
Last Judgement
Wise Virgins
Foolish Virgins
 We went inside the cathedral. The cathedral has lacy ceiling vaults, a long nave and two side aisles. 
Ceiling vaults and long nave
The cathedral has amazing stained glass windows with bible scenes.  Some windows date from 1441 but some was replaced after damage.  An interesting window was the Dance of Death window. 
Stained glass windows
Dance of Death window
We spend about an hour to walk through the inside the cathedral.  We spend time to explore and see the ceiling, nave, statues and pews.  We sat for a while to just look at the windows before going to the shop with souvenirs and books about the cathedral.

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