France-002964 – Side Chapel Details
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The Basilica of Notre-Dame de Fourvière is a minor basilica in Lyon. It was built with private funds in a dominating position on a hill looking over the city.
Fourvière is dedicated to the Virgin Mary, who saved the city of Lyon from a cholera epidemic sweeping Europe in 1643.
During the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871), Prussian forces, having taken Paris, were progressing south towards Lyon. Their halt and retreat were, once again, attributed by the Church to the intercession of the Virgin Mary.
Fourvière actually contains two churches, one on top of the other. The upper sanctuary is very ornate, while the lower is a much simpler design. Work on the triumphant basilica was begun in 1872 and finished in 1884. Finishing touches in the interior were not completed until 1964.
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