Famous Churches – The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Guangzhou, South China



The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Guangzhou, South China

The Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus is located at 56 Yat Tak Road, Guangzhou. It is located on the north bank of the Pearl River and stands at the heart of the busy old town. The site of the Cathedral was originally the residence of the Viceroy of Guangdong and Guangxi Provinces in the Qing Dynasty. During the Second Opium War, the residence was completely destroyed and Viceroy Ye Mingchen was captured by the British. The Catholic Cathedral started in 1863 and was completed in 1888 during the reign of emperor Guangxu. It was designed by the French architect Guillemin. The cathedral, like most of the great Gothic Cathedrals of Europe, is built of solid masonry, including all the walls, pillars and the twin towers. The Cathedral was actually inspired by the Basilica of St. Clotilde in Paris. It is also been called “Stone House”, as all of the walls and columns are constructed with granite stone. It features a nave of approximate 27 meters high, flanked by two lower aisles, and 14 small side-chapels. With a floor area of 2,754 square meters, it is the largest Roman Catholic Church in the Guangzhou archdiocese and the largest cathedral in the Gothic style in China and Southeast Asia. The Cathedral is 35 meters wide, 78.69 meters long, and the twin towers rise 58.5 meters high. The west tower is a clock tower while the east tower serves as bell tower, having five gigantic bronze bells shipped in from France in the 19th century.

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