[Facade of Notre-Dame de Paris] / E. Baldus.
Notre-Dame de Paris, or "Our Lady of Paris", is a medieval cathedral on the Île de la Cité island in the historic center of Paris. The cathedral's construction was begun in 1160 and complete by 1260, though it was modified in the following centuries. In the 1790s, Notre-Dame suffered during the French Revolution and much of its religious artwork was destroyed. A major restoration took place between 1844 and 1864. The cathedral is one of the most widely recognized symbols of the city of Paris and the French nation. Artwork, relics, and other antiques stored at the cathedral include the Crown of Thorns which Jesus wore prior to his crucifixion and a piece of the cross on which he was crucified, a 13th-century organ, stained-glass windows, and bronze statues of the Twelve Apostles. While undergoing renovation and restoration, the roof of Notre-Dame caught fire on the evening of 15 April 2019 leading to the destruction of the flèche (the timber spire over the crossing) and most of the lead-covered wooden roof above the stone vaulted ceiling.