On April 15th, 2019 around 6:40 pm, I was walking around the Jardin du Luxembourg park in Paris with some friends when we saw some yellow colored smoke in the sky. We thought nothing of it, but soon discovered, shocked, that one of the most famous landmarks in the world, the Notre Dame cathedral just north of the park, was engulfed in a terrible blaze.
It was touch and go that the structure could be saved at all, but the city’s pompiers (firefighters) finally got control of the blaze in the early morning of April 16th. French President Emmanuel Macron promised to rebuild it, but that raised a question: How can you restore an 800-year-old structure without any plans? Luckily, thanks to the late American historian Andrew Tallon, we do have an incredibly accurate and recent picture of the structure.
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