Cathédrale Saint-Gatien de Tours, is dedicated to the first
bishop of the city and is a 'must-see' when visiting the
Loire Valley. The current cathedral sits on the site of a
number of predecessors all of which were damaged by fires.
One in 1166 during the conflict between Louis VII of
France and Henry II of England (who also ruled over the
neighbouring region of Anjou at the time).
Construction proper on the existing cathedral began in 1270
but progress was slow and it was not completed until 1547,
so what we have is a building made up of styles spanning a
number of centuries, though the predominate 'style' is
The nave was completed around 1450, in the flamboyant
style we see today. Then, from 1450 to 1484, the facade
is built in the same style on the foundations of a
Gallo-Roman wall. The north tower was completed around
1507 while the south tower, in the same style, would not
be completed for another 40 years!. Both seem to
have acquired renaissance caps.