Notre Dame: Fire, Ghosts and the Devil

Notre Dame, Paris, France

As wild flames engulf one of the most sacred places in France, onlookers desperately pray that the history and artifacts contained within the Notre Dame Cathedral may be spared. Being one of the quintessential icons of Paris, the Notre Dame Cathedral and its glory will likely be rebuilt after this devastating fire. But what may be lost from this tragedy remains to be seen.

Notre Dame Cathedral before fire.
A lesser seen side of the Notre Dame Cathedral before the devastating fire that damaged it.

Dark stories and legends suggesting the Cathedral may be haunted have circulated for a long time. This leaves more questions to be asked and many to ponder what type of adverse effects this fire could have had on the spirits thought to dwell within Notre Dame.

Notre Dame Cathedral before fire.
One of the most iconic places in Paris, before being burned, the Notre Dame Cathedral.

Ghosts of Notre Dame Cathedral

There are a number of ghost stories associated with the supposedly haunted Notre Dame Cathedral. Some say that there are many kings and holy historical figures who continue to walk the halls of the Cathedral long after death. This makes sense given the long history of the church (dating back to the 1300s) and many of the historical events and figures who passed through the cathedral. Some examples of such events include the crowning of Henry VI of England as King of France back in 1431, as well as Napoleon Bonaparte being crowned Emporer in 1804.

Notre Dame haunted place in Paris.
Inside the glorious Notre Dame Cathedral looking up at its stained glass rose windows. Thought to be one of the most haunted places in Paris.

However, it is the ghosts of two unknown females who are the most frequently spoken of. Many people have claimed to sight one or two females walking across the roof of the Notre Dame Cathedral, weaving in and out amongst its gothic architecture and stone gargoyles before suddenly disappearing. While no one really knows the origin of these mysterious women, there are rumors suggesting they may have committed suicide by jumping from the roof of the cathedral.

Notre Dame, Paris.
Inside the dark and supposedly haunted Notre Dame in Paris.

The Devil and Notre Dame Cathedral

While stories of ghosts are prevalent in relation to Notre Dame, there is a far more sinister legend that also exists. This legend dates back to the Cathedral’s construction and has ties to the Devil. Legend has it that one of the best ironworkers in Paris during the 1300s was tasked with creating a magnificent door to lead into the entrance of the cathedral. Years passed and no matter how hard this man tried he could not put forward a design that was accepted by the church.

Haunted Notre Dame Paris.
Altar within Paris most haunted cathedral.

After many failed attempts to deliver a door worthy of the grand Notre Dame, this man resorted to prayer. When his prayers weren’t answered in a timely manner, he took a far more drastic approach and called on the Devil for help. Soon, it seemed as though his prayers had been answered as he put forward an elaborate design that pleased the church.

Sculptures within Notre Dame.
Just some of the many sculptures that exist within the Cathedral.

Shortly after, the doors were created and then installed. They towered with a special type of magnificence, yet there was just one small problem. The doors could not be opened with any amount of force. When workers went to consult this ironworker about his doors, he was found dead inside of his apartment. He had hanged himself and left behind a letter suggesting the doors be doused in holy water. After the doors were doused, they pried open with ease.

Notre Dame Cathedral doors
The front entrance door to the Notre Dame Cathedral, supposedly linked to the devil.

Some people have claimed to sight the apparition of the ironworker, usually sitting in front of the doors he created after making a deal with the Devil. Others claim that a little homage to Satan appears hidden within the doors’ design. Close inspection of the irons swirls on the door reveals swirls similar to the number 666.

Iron work on Cathedral doors in Paris.
Intricate ironwork on the doors of the Cathedral. Can you spot the 666?

Notre Dame before the Fire

Notre Dame has sat at 6 Parvis Notre-Dame – Pl. Jean-Paul II, 75004 Paris, France for many years. Since the devastating fire broke out and ruined much of the structure in 2019, its future remains uncertain. Due to extensive interior damage, the cathedral, which was once free to enter, will likely remain closed for some time.

Notre Dame Cathedral candles
Candles lit inside the haunted cathedral.

These photos were taken towards the end of 2018. I hope they act as a reminder and tribute to the history, beauty, and faith that made Notre Dame a truly special place.

Inside the Notre Dame.
Lucky to have visited this iconic location before it set on fire.

If you enjoyed this article you may also like to learn about other haunted places in Paris.

Thanks for reading!

xoxo

Amy

About Amy

Amy is a world traveller and explorer of creepy locations. She has visited some of the most famously haunted places around the world in search of evidence of the paranormal. Follow Amy's Journey:

Comments (10)

  • Posted by Jarrad C on April 15, 2019

    Very sad news. Your photos are amazing, as always, and really shows the beauty of this place. It is a shame most of it is probably destroyed by the fire.

      Posted by Amy on April 15, 2019

      It is devastating. You and I both are lucky to have been able to see its beauty. It will be interesting to see any restoration efforts they have planned after the fire.

  • Posted by Sonia waine on April 16, 2019

    Notre Dame, one of the oldest and most beautiful cathedrals in the world, such a shame it caught on fire it’s
    Definitely on my must see list. Thanks for the history, that door is amazing and definitely 666 looked like the
    Inspiration for the design, seriously it did look like the devils work πŸ˜ˆπŸ–€

      Posted by Amy on April 16, 2019

      Thanks for reading Sonia. The fire at Notre Dame was very tragic. I hope you still get the chance to see it – I have heard that the front towers are relatively unharmed by the fire, but unfortunately, the inside may be closed to the public for some time.

  • Posted by Emma on April 16, 2019

    Thank you for reminding us the beauty & the history of Notre Dame Cathedral. The tragic event made a lot of us speechless & heartbroken to see it engulf in flames.

      Posted by Amy on April 16, 2019

      Thanks for reading and leaving this comment, Emma! It was such a sad day and truly terrible to lose so much of the history contained within Notre Dame.

  • Posted by Sandy wolf on April 17, 2019

    Forgot the incredible story of the Hunchback of Notre Dame

      Posted by Amy on April 17, 2019

      Of course! How could I leave that one out haha. Thanks for reading.

  • Posted by Alan Sanborn on May 2, 2019

    Thanks Amy for the beautiful photos and the creepy tale of the Devil’s doors! I was so upset the day the Cathedral burned. It has long been near the top of my wish list of places to visit. I have twice built a 14 foot tall version of Notre Dame on the front lawn as part of two original “Trick or Treating on Monster Street” musicals, where the local kids got to see a show on Hallowe’en and then got to trick or treat at the homes of all the famous monsters including, of course, Quasimodo. I’m pretty new to your site but look forward to delving into all your past adventures!

      Posted by Amy on May 2, 2019

      Hi Alan! Thank you so much for reading and for this comment! I love your story about the Notre Dame display at Halloween, that would be so cool! Glad you are looking forward to exploring my site more. I hope you find plenty of articles that interest you. Cheers!

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