China and France unite to bring new life to Notre Dame
BEIJING, Nov. 21, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- A news report by China.org.cn on China and France’s cooperation on the renovation of the Notre Dame:
Recently, China and France signed a cooperation document on the restoration of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. A group of Chinese experts will participate in the on-site restoration alongside a French team. The theme and model of the cooperation will be confirmed in 2020.
The 800-year-old cathedral was badly damaged by a massive fire this April. Notre Dame has witnessed many important historical moments such as the coronation of Napoleon and celebration of the allied victory of WWII. It is also a cultural and architectural treasure, gaining worldwide literary fame through the pathetic story of Quasimodo in Victor Hugo’s “Hunchback of Notre Dame” set in the 15th century. The magnificent building will be expected to rise from the ashes after painstaking restoration.
It’s reported that, since the devastating fire, Chinese and French cultural heritage administrations have maintained frequent communications to discuss possible cooperation on restoration. China, in fact, became the first country to reach an intergovernmental agreement on this issue with France.
China is known for its many ancient buildings. It thus has rich experience in the protection and restoration of cultural relics made by various materials, wood, glass and rock in particular. A case in point is the Forbidden City that witnesses nearly 600 years of history. In the past decades, China has never ceased to renovate and restore it, and has conducted much research based on various protection projects. This time, skillful Chinese craftsmen will go to France to help with the restoration of Notre Dame.
France chose to work with China, because it knows and trusts China’s technologies and capacities. China agreed to join in the task, because it wants to help share the responsibilities, and it understands and appreciates France’s efforts in preserving the treasures of human civilization.
In fact, China and France have cooperated in cultural heritage protection for a long time. From the Forbidden City’s exhibitions in Versailles and the Louvre, and the return of bronze rat and rabbit heads, to the Old Summer Palace, to the agreement China and France have just reached on a technical exchange and training program to help protect the Terracotta Army in Xi’an, China and France have kept working hard to broaden and deepen their cooperation.
In the long history of humanity, it is impossible for ancient buildings and cultural relics to escape being weathered by wind and rain, or being damaged by natural or man-made disasters. Technologies need to be adopted to protect and restore them. All countries and every individual should do their best to help with the work. Even more importantly, a long-term view should be taken to ensure that exchanges and mutual learning of different civilizations can see beyond differences in views, cultures, ethnic origins and nationalities.
China, France unite to bring new life to Notre Dame
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