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United Kingdom: Glasgow Cathedral

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Glasgow Cathedral | United Kingdom | Europe

[Visited: October 2007]

Glasgow was founded by Saint Mungo, the apostle who also built a first church on the location of where you can now find Glasgow Cathedral - or High Kirk of Glasgow. Saint Mungo lived in the 6th century, his own and subsequent wooden churches were replaced by a stone church in the 12th century. These, too, were replaced, adapted and changed; in the 15th century, some towers were added to the cathedral. This is one of the few cathedrals in Scotland to have survived the Reformation. After his death, Saint Mungo was buried where he had built his church, and it can now be seen in the crypt of Glasgow Cathedral.

Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Glasgow Necropolis: tombs in the afternoon sunlight

It takes a short walk from the city to reach: Glasgow has not developed around its historical city centre. When I approached the historical centre, I noticed how few people were around here, some tourists were entering the oldest house of the city just opposite Cathedral Square. Upon entering Glasgow Cathedral, you immediately notice the light. When I entered, sunlight was falling inside through the beautifully decorated stained glass windows, casting delicate light on the interior of this very high structure. I walked inside, enjoying the beautifully decorated details of the cathedral. I also visited the crypt and the Blacader Aisle, on the site of the first church.

Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): View on Glasgow Cathedral from Cathedral square

When I left Glasgow Cathedral, I decided to walk up Glasgow Necropolis, which is right next door. After crossing the Bridge of Sighs, I walked up one of the paths which eventually took me to the top of the hill on which the Necropolis is built. Originally, the land was bought in the 17th century, and in the 19th century it was converted to a cemetery, along the lines of Pere La Chaise in Paris. While it lacks the grandeur of its French example, Glasgow Necropolis certainly looks solemn and is beautifully laid out. When walking on top, while beautiful sunlight casts obelisk and monumental tombstone shadows on the lawn, you can enjoy views over the cathedral, the city and river, but also the industry just next door. This is home to the resting place of some fifty thousand people and therefore has become a real city of the dead.

Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Glasgow Necropolis: tombstones
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Detail of interior of Glasgow Cathedral
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Glasgow Necropolis: tower with colourful trees
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Glasgow Necropolis is a large collection of obelisks
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Bellfry of Glasgow Cathedral with tombtones and obelisks
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Glasgow Necropolis: tombstones
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Tombstones and obelisk at Glasgow Necropolis
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Religious figure represented in stained glass in Glasgow Cathedral
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Glasgow Necropolis: main nave
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Crypt of Glasgow Cathedral with tomb of Saint Mungo
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Choir of Glasgow Cathedral
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Lantern and Glasgow Cathedral
Picture of Glasgow Cathedral (United Kingdom): Glasgow Necropolis: view from above

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