Brussels Cathedral

The St. Michael and Gudula Cathedral (Cathédrale Saint-Michel or Sint-Michiels Kathedraal) in Brussels is named for the patron saints of Belgium and is the primary church of the country.

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History of Brussels Cathedral

After the Cathedral of St. Michael was completed circa 1047, the Duke of Brabant transferred the relics of Saint Gudula here. Very little is known about this daughter of a 7th-century Carolingian nobleman, but her relics are still sheltered in the cathedral.

In the 13th century, the cathedral was renovated in the Gothic style. The choir was constructed between 1226 and 1276. The facade was completed in the mid 15th century.

Today, the Cathedral of St. Michael and Gudula is the episcopal see of the Archbishop of Mechlin-Brussels and therefore the leading Catholic church in Belgium. All royal weddings and christenings take place here.

What to See at Brussels Cathedral

Perhaps the most outstanding feature of the interior are the stained glass windows, designed by various artists. Those by Bernard van Orley, a 16th-century court painter, are the most spectacular.

The window of The Last Judgment, at the bottom of the nave, is illuminated from within in the evening.

The remains of an earlier, 11th-century Romanesque church that was on the site can be glimpsed through glass apertures set into the floor.

Quick Facts on Brussels Cathedral

Site Information
Names:Brussels Cathedral · Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula
Country:Belgium
Categories:cathedrals
Visitor and Contact Information
Coordinates:50.847828° N, 4.360304° E
Address:Brussels, Belgium
Lodging:View hotels near Brussels Cathedral
Note: This information was accurate when first published and we do our best to keep it updated, but details such as opening hours and prices can change without notice. To avoid disappointment, please check with the site directly before making a special trip.

References

  1. Fodor's Belgium, 3rd ed.
  2. Frommer's Brussels

More Information

© JaHoVil
© Colin Gregory Palmer
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© Ian Patrick Hines
© Ian Patrick Hines
© Ian Patrick Hines

Map of Brussels Cathedral

Below is a location map and aerial view of Brussels Cathedral. Using the buttons on the left (or the wheel on your mouse), you can zoom in for a closer look, or zoom out to get your bearings. To move around, click and drag the map with your mouse.