The Church of Saint Sulpice has become world famous in recent times thanks to the novel and film The Da Vinci Code.
It is one of the most beautiful in Paris and the second highest in the city, so its visit is almost essential. And as a curious note, its two towers are not the same.
Despite its unfinished appearance, this unfinished but extraordinarily beautiful church in Paris is worth a visit.
The visit to the Church of Saint Sulpice
Work on the Church of Saint Sulpice began in 1646.
In that same place there was already another Romanesque church since it was built in the 13th century.
After 130 years of work, it was finally inaugurated with a simple two-story facade crowned by two unequal towers after one of them was damaged 1 year after the inauguration during the war between Prussia and France.
The first thing that the visitor discovers when arriving at the church of Saint Sulpice is its simple facade and its two enormous towers that give it a characteristic appearance.
If there is something that makes this church special, it is its towers, not only because of their height, but because they are different, something unusual in the architecture of this style.
But it is also possible to observe the 2 curious shells located next to the entrance door.
These shells were a gift to Francis I of the Republic of Venice.
Inside, in addition to marveling at science by seeing the gnomon, we must highlight the two works by Delacroix, the statue of Saint Peter, very similar to the one in Saint Peter’s Basilica and which, like that one, has a foot worn by pilgrims.
The Gnomon, the jewel of Saint Sulpice
Inside the church of Saint Sulpice is its most famous element, the Gnomon of the solar meridian.
This element was built by order of the priest Languet de Gercy to control the equinoxes and to know on what date Easter would fall.
For those who do not know, the solar meridian gnomon is an instrument that allows you to find out the solar noon.
With the system installed in Saint Sulpice it was possible to know exactly when September, March and December 21 were. As a curiosity, it should be noted that thanks to the Gnomon, the church was saved from destruction during the French Revolution since it was used for scientific measurements.
It should be noted that although in The Da Vinci Code the gnomon was said to be the prime meridian or rose line, this is not true. The so-called pink line does not pass through this church.
What to see near the Church of Saint Sulpice
Around the church there is an exclusive neighborhood where you can make your best purchases with stores of the most prestigious designers.
In the square where the Church of Saint Sulpice is located we have a beautiful fountain, also called the Fountain of the Four Cardinal Points.
Four bishops are represented in it pointing to each of the four cardinal points, which is why it is also called the Fountain of the Four Bishops.
Crossing the area of exclusive shops we reach the River Seine where there is an imposing building, the Institut de France. It is a neoclassical building, home to several science and arts academies.
The Church of Saint Germain des Pres is another of the curious churches in Paris and this is also the oldest that is still standing today. It was built in the 9th century on the same site that an abbey previously existed from the 6th century.
You can find more information on the official website of the Church of Saint Sulpice.