Official Post 2 Gloucester Cathedral

Our last assignment was to look at a few cathedrals and I was beyond excited that Gloucester Cathedral was on our list!  I am so excited to see this cathedral in only a few short months.  For those of you that don’t know, Gloucester Cathedral is one of the many filming locations for the Harry Potter movies.  I happen to be a huge fan of the Harry Potter movies, so this explains my excitement.  The cathedral was built between 1089 and the 19th century, and was dedicated to Saint Peter; founded by King Henry VIII.  It also contains two royal burials and the cathedral has been remodeled over the years.  As for the architecture, the core of the architecture is Norman, but the cathedral also has Gothic additions.  The columns are Norman and are separated by heavy walls and rounded arches that support a Gothic vaulted ceiling.  Most of the fabric is Romanesque and the frame of the Cathedral is Gothic.  The most important feature is the Great East Window, it was the largest window created in the middle ages.  The window was also the first war memorial in England. The cathedral is important because it showcases the mix of different architectural elements and the history of the Great East Window.  I absolutely love the Great East Window and cannot wait to see it in person.  The attention to detail is beautiful and the concept in general of dedicating a window to war heroes in beautiful in itself.  When researching I thought this would be regular sized window, but no, it is 22 meters high and 12 meters wide, which happens to be the size of tennis court, just for reference.  The East Window has many different scenes, but they are all centered around the Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ.  I also found it interesting that the window was taken apart during Word War II for safety, but survived every other event in history without being dismantled.  When I looked into the cathedral further I came across a lot of articles explaining how the historic cathedral was transformed into the wizarding world of Harry Potter.  As you can imagine, there are not a lot of original modern finishes on the cathedral, so the staff actually had to go in and cover up all of the “modern” switches.  The movies also do not take place in a cathedral, they take place in a castle, so all traces of a cathedral had to be covered up; stained glass windows were covered with sheets of plastic and the statue of Adam and Eve was actually left in the movie, but producers decided to give them clothes and lightening bolts on their foreheads.  One of the most famous elements of the cathedral is the dark red door in the Chamber of Secrets.  The staff actually had to build a water tank to pump water into the cathedral and block off the door while flooding the bathroom.  If you’ve seen the movie you’ll now exactly what I’m talking about.  There are so many more things about this cathedral that connect to the movie, but the most interesting thing is that there was actually a lot of pushback when it was announced that the Harry Potter movies were going to be filmed on site.  If you haven’t seen the movies, I highly suggest watching them all, just one or at least a trailer to see this beautiful cathedral.

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