Saint Eustache is definitely a church with an illustrious past. Situated in the commercial heart of Paris (the famous market "les Halles" and the Stock exchange are nearby), it has always been a place where prominent people went in and out. Amongst the who is who are Richelieu, who was baptised here, Louis XIV, who received his first communion and Moliere, who married in this church. Mozart was also here, but on a sad occasion. His mother passed away in Paris during her son's 1788 international road show and was buried in St. Eustache.
Saint Eustache is a beautiful building blending gothic with renaissance elements. Gothic style was already a bit on its way out when St Eustache was designed in the 16th century. It remained the dominant element of the church's structure, but many of the decorative elements were "already" designed in the new Renaissance style. When you enter, the dominant impression is that of a very spacious and "airy" cathedral. This is not least due to the fact that the church had to fit into the existing system of surrounding streets. As a consequence, Saint Eustache is very high in proportion to its length. The fact that the church had to fit into a given slot can also be traced back in the series of chapels towards "les Halles", which become less deep the further they are away from the main altar.
As regards the interior, three items stick out of the rich decoration: First of all, the monumental organ, the biggest in entire France, secondly, several painting of Rubens and thirdly, believe it or not, a tryptichon by Keith Haring. How come? - Well, for you to find out.
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