When a person arrives in Milan as a tourist, on business or for shopping, he definitely reaches the main and central square. This square is the heart of the city because if you put an imaginary compass into this point, you will be able to draw a perfect circle, which will be the medieval city centre. All these considerations are nothing when you come to the hovering above the ground marble miracle, which is almost 7 centuries old. In 1386, the first stone of the most important Gothic church in Italy and the third largest church of the Catholic world was laid.
It is known that marble is a particularly valued material in the history of mankind. The reason for this becomes clear for everyone, even for an inartistic person, at the nearest point of contact with the Cathedral. In Italian it is called Duomo. With the different lighting conditions, at different times of day and in different seasons, this amazing building can create a completely different mood, inspire different feelings. For instance, there is a belief that Duomo looks the best at midnight under the bright light of the moon. It seems that many of the inhabitants of the marble terraces and spires are going to come down from their pedestals and start telling the amazing and slightly terrifying medieval history.
There are about 3400 statues in the cathedral, and among them there are not only the biblical characters, but also 96 chimeras of the east, fighters in the rack, the statue, which in the opinion of the Milanese was the prototype of the Statue of Liberty in New York, and even a small portrait of Mussolini. To be honest, his portrait is now altered beyond recognition, and it is hard to find it without any “hint”. In the most honourable place stands a symbol of the city. This is a gilded figure of Madonna because the temple is dedicated to the Virgin Birth. It is my favourite one. The size of the statue is 4.16 meters, and the weigh is about a ton.
There is always the mystical twilight and the glow of stained glass inside of the cathedral. There is no other place in Italy with such a number of stained glass in a Church. The altar windows are the largest stained glass windows in Europe. On the top of the altar, there is the little red light. It is holy for Milan because it is a nail from the Holy Crucifix. On the 14th of September is a Day of the Exaltation of the Cross. Every year there is a ceremony of removing the nail by the archbishop of Milan, who rises to the top of the cathedral in the old elevator. According to the legend, this elevator is invented by Leonardo da Vinci.
The most unusual thing in the Cathedral is the meridian and a sundial, which from the late 18th century show the noon. Along the entrance stretches the metal strip on which all signs of the zodiac are marked. At noon sunlight correctly gets to the sign, which matches the current month. The failures of the meridian, which happened in the 60’s of the last century, were the signal of a serious danger, subsidence of the cathedral.
From the first sight, this Cathedral is a common Gothic Church, but, with the nearer approach and acquaintance, it becomes obvious that it is not so. It is not common and usual. As for me personally, I admire this creation of art. When I saw it for the first time, I felt that I like it more than the other buildings. Later, when I discovered different interesting facts about its history and, what is more important, about its architecture, I realised that it is going to change my life.
This great building had a very important impact on me and my view of the future. Before my visit to Milan Cathedral, I was enrolled in studying fashion. However, this visit changed everything. I realised that I want to be an architect. This building inspired me so strongly that I changed the subject of my studying. To be more precise, I am fond of the interior. For me personally, this is the most appealing part of the architecture.
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