The basilica is built on a vast scale to take full advantage of its commanding site. The architect Abadie was inspired by the Romano-Byzantine style. The domes, elongated into ovoid forms, the 80-metre bell-tower from which the 19-tons Savoyarde bell can be heard, the whiteness of this monument which overlooks the whole of Paris, henceforth makes it one of the major landmarks of the Paris scenery. The building’s extraordinary whiteness is a result of the material used in its construction: Chateau-Landon stone bleaches with age.
The impressive façade with its triple-arched portico is surmounted by two bronze equestrian statues of St. Joan of Arc and St. Louis by H. Lefebvre, and the climax of the overall design is the statue of Christ, his hand raised in blessing. In contrast to the exterior, the interior is extensively decorated with mosaics: those in the apse over the high altar were designed by Luc-Olivier Merson and show Christ adored by the Virgin, St. Joan of Arc and St Michael.
Built on the Montmartre hill the Roman-Byzantine basilica of the Sacred Heart dominates Paris. It has been constructed in devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus after the 1870 disaster, the capture of Paris by the Prussians, and the civil war which steeped the capital in blood. The archbishop of Paris in 1872 approved the wish of a Parisian, Mr. Legentil, to build a sanctuary dedicated to the heart of Jesus-Christ, “true God and true man”, present in the Holy Sacrament exposed day and night. Therefore he chose the site where Saint Denis was beheaded because of his faith in late IIIrd century. In 1873 the Assemblee Nationale voted a law declaring the building of public interest.
The basilica’s construction was financed by every parish in France.
In 1875, work began. Unfortunately, with the breakout of the First World War, the consecration planned for 1914 had to be postponed until after the war.
Since 1885, the prayer of perpetual adoration has been the most important part of the life and activities of this worldwide famous sanctuary.
The Basilica of the “Sacré Coeur” is a place of pilgrimage where the chaplains and the Benedictine nuns of the Sacred Heart welcome pilgrims, faithful worshippers and all those who seek God. Adjacent to the basilica, the Ephrem Hostel is opened to the pilgrims who have previously booked their room.
35 Rue du Chevalier de la Barre
Tel. : 01 53 41 89 00
How to get there
Metro line 2 or 12 : Abbesses (then take hill tram), Anvers (then take hill tram), Barbes-Rochechouart, Chateau-Rouge, Lamarck-Caulaincourt.
Bus : 30, 31, 80, 85 and Montmartrobus
(from Métro Jules Joffrin or Pigalle)
Basilica open from 6am to 11pm
Dôme : open from 9ham to 5h30pm (7pm in summer)