Mariage à la cathédrale de RodezMariage à la cathédrale de Rodez
©Mariage à la cathédrale de Rodez|D.VIET - CRT Occitanie
ExploreThe Cathedral's chapels.

Flit from one chapel to the next

Whether you enter from the north or south side, Rodez Cathedral is a feast for the eyes. At first because its understatement contrasts with its interior. Then because of its unusual layout.

Cierges à la cathédrale de RodezCierges à la cathédrale de Rodez
©Cierges à la cathédrale de Rodez|P.THEBAULT - CRT Occitanie

A monumental collection.

At 100m long, 37m wide and 30m high beneath a keystone, Rodez Cathedral is impressive.

It took three centuries to build. Its decoration is simple, unique but harmonious. The understated features inside the cathedral don’t take away from the cathedral’s majesty.

Two altars

Unlike regular cathedrals, Rodez Cathedral’s western side is sealed with no entry. And two altars have always faced each other inside:

  • the parish altar,
  • the altar for the cathedral chapter and, by extension, the general clergy.

You walk past both altars.

Rich interior furniture

The cathedral’s interior houses rich furniture including:

  • the rood screen that originally stood around the choir and has been rebuilt at the south entrance,
  • the pipe organ (17th century) with surprisingly refined features,
  • the richly sculpted and decorated stalls by master sculptor André Sulpice’s studio (Marvejols in Gévaudan), 1478-1488. The Statues of Saints are sculpted out of wood. The incredibly well-preserved work is impressive.
  • The monumental altarpiece in the chapel (founded in 1522), named Gaillard Roux (or Saint-Sépulcre Chapel) and its sculpted Burial of Jesus group (16th century). A feast for the eyes! The altarpiece and altar are made of polychrome stone. You can see that the founder has engraved them with their initials and coat of arms in several places.

A gallery of chapels

Rodez Cathedral is full of chapels. Above them is an illuminated gallery wrapped around the top of the cathedral and called the triforium.

Saint-Sacrement Chapel is one of the most famous. It was built at the bottom of the cathedral’s north-western tower in the latter half of the 16th century and originally housed the cathedral’s treasure.

The chapel stands out for its unique architecture: a coffered ceiling. The remarkable coffering is “bewitching” it’s so strikingly beautiful.

Staggering stained-glass windows

Old and more modern stained-glass windows gleam together in this authentic religious setting. Seven stained-glass windows in the choir chapels were made between 2002 and 2007 by the artist Stéphane Belzère in collaboration with the Duchemin studio following a tender for an iconographic project.

What stands out about these new stained-glass windows is that traditional Christian portrayals blend into modern scientific imagery. The traditional figurative repertoire and contemporary shapes mingle. Once again, we’re blown away.