Lifestyle & Belief

Notre Dame's new bells inaugurated in Paris


Paris' Notre Dame cathedral will inaugurate nine new bells this Palm Sunday.


Joel Saget

Notre Dame cathedral in Paris will inaugurate nine new bells on Palm Sunday.

The Catholic cathedral had what were known as the most out-of-tune bells in all of Europe.

Bloomberg said that Parisians have cursed the horrible-sounding bells for nearly a century - they even deafened hunchback Quasimodo.

“The idea of this project was to recreate a set of bells that were as great as the ones existing before the revolution,” said Paul Bergamo, head of the Cornille Havard bell foundry in Normandy, that cast some of the new bells.

“Not to recreate an old-style set, but a 21st-century set of bells.”

The new bells will ring out during the Palm Sunday ceremony tomorrow to mark the 850th anniversary of the church's construction.

The original nine bells date back to the 17th century with several destroyed during the French Revolution's crackdown on church chimes.

The largest, 13-ton Emmanuel, dates back to 1686 and remains to this day.

It has marked the end of both world wars as well as coronations and ceremonies.

“They rang for the freedom of Paris in 1945,” Bergamo said.

“They don’t ring well, they’re not beautiful, but they’re part of history.”

The combined weight of the new bells is a huge 23 tons.

The bells were tested Saturday - the first time they were rung since they were delivered January.