Mainz Cathedral, Mainz

Mainz Cathedral, Mainz (must see)

Mainz has been a center of Christianity since 746 when venerated Saint Boniface brought Christianity to the area. Archbishop Willigis ordered a new cathedral and modeled it on Rome's famous St. Peter's. Mainz Cathedral suffered extensive damage from a fire on the day of its inauguration in 1009. It was repaired by 1036.

Mainz Cathedral retains the original Romanesque style, while chapels and other additions have been added over the centuries and reflect each time period's style.

Mainz Cathedral's triple nave Romanesque pillar basilica and the bronze door facing the square are original. The cathedral has several side chapels and is surrounded by other buildings. St. Gotthard's chapel was built in 1137 and features lighter colored stone.

Fire damaged the cathedral seven times over the centuries. The spire was built in 1767 from stone to protect it from future fire damage.

The east chancel is the oldest part of the cathedral, and the walls there are over two meters (six and a half feet) thick. The Romanesque west chancel dates to 1239, and its Gothic belfry was added in the 15th century.

The cathedral houses tombs and remains of many of the cathedral's bishops. Mainz Cathedral's portrait gallery is one of its most beloved treasures. The portrait gallery features centuries of ecclesiastical dignitaries.

Several kings and queens of Germany were crowned in Mainz Cathedral in the 11th, 12th, and 13th centuries. The Diet of Pentecost was held in the cathedral and is known as one of the most legendary feasts of the Middle Ages.

Mainz was attacked by French troops in 1792 and Prussian troops in 1793. The cathedral was damaged and then used as barracks. Many of the church's artifacts were sold, and parts of the wooden interior were burned for heat. The cathedral was restored to a church in 1814, and reconstruction work was completed in 1831.

The Rhine river correction damaged Mainz Cathedral's foundations in the early 1900s. The cathedral was reinforced with concrete and steel. World War II bombs damaged the cathedral, and restoration work continued into the 1970s.

Despite of the damages, there is a good number of art works can be seen inside the cathedral. In the Ketteler chapel, visitors will find an altar to the Virgin Mary. The Ketteler chapel features a statue of the "Serene Lady of Mainz." The wood-carved figures date to 1510.

Today Mainz Cathedral is an iconic symbol of the city.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Mainz. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Mainz Cathedral on Map

Sight Name: Mainz Cathedral
Sight Location: Mainz, Germany (See walking tours in Mainz)
Sight Type: Religious
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Mainz, Germany

Create Your Own Walk in Mainz

Create Your Own Walk in Mainz

Creating your own self-guided walk in Mainz is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
In the Footsteps of Gutenberg

In the Footsteps of Gutenberg

The capital of Rhineland-Palatinate, Mainz has made a name throughout the world as Gutenberg's city, the birthplace of Johannes Gutenberg and his great invention, the first movable metal-type printing press. It is precisely for this important heritage that Mainz has retained its importance as a hub for some of Germany's oldest publishing houses.

Following in the footsteps of Gutenberg...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.2 Km or 0.7 Miles
Mainz Introduction Walking Tour

Mainz Introduction Walking Tour

Mainz is the Rhineland-Palatinate state capital and its largest city. It is located on the Rhine river, where the Main river joins the Rhine. Mainz has remained a prosperous city and is an important container port hub.

Mainz was founded as a Roman military fortress in the 1st century BC. The Roman stronghold was called Mogontiacum. Visitors can see several Roman shipwrecks and learn more about...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.3 Km or 2.1 Miles