Anyone read Pillars of the Earth? We love us some historical fiction around here. And somehow we seem to have read quite a few books set in southwest England. Pillars of the Earth is set in the 12th century in the fictional town of Kingsbridge, and covers, among other plot points, the building of a great cathedral.
Fascinating. The trials. The politics. The decisions. The finances.
I mean, picture it. Your church leader comes to you and is like, "I've got a building project I'd like to propose. You probably won't live to see it completed. It'll take more money than any of us have. But man will it be awesome."
The sheer manpower, building materials, coordination, and plain old ingenuity is a bit crazy to me. No fancy CAD or modern building methods. Simple tools.
And marvelous, intricate, incredible buildings. The craftsmen must have been extremely talented. And while I know some cathedrals were built more for the egos of priests and townspeople, I'm still hopeful that God has been truly glorified in these cathedrals as well over the years.
We visited our first tremendous old school cathedral in Salisbury after our Stonehenge visit. We picked up some picnic fodder on our way there. The cathedral didn't disappoint. The building dates back to 1200, and is home to both the oldest working clock AND a copy of the Magna Carta (one of only 4 still remaining). Who knew?