Marian Shrines

WHS containing (or once containing) "Marian Shrines" - ("a shrine marking an apparition or other miracle ascribed to the Blessed Virgin Mary, or a site on which is centered a historically strong Marian devotion. Such locales are often the destination of pilrimages").

Connected Sites

Site Rationale Link
Aachen Cathedral Shrine of St Mary in the Cathedral - "Sanctuary built by Charlemagne. A chapel in the main cathedral of Aachen houses four major relics believed to be from biblical times. They were never exhibited before the fourteenth century and since then only infrequently. They are the swaddling clothes of the Infant Jesus; the cloak of Our Lady; the loin cloth of Christ on the Cross; and the cloth on which lay the head of John the Baptist after his beheading. The separate reliquaries containing them are in themselves works of art. Great pilgrimages flock to Aachen to venerate these treasures in July of every seventh year, when they are on exhibition.
Belfries The Cathedral of Our Lady in Antwerp has a Marian Chapel which contains the statue of Our Lady of Antwerp, after which the church is named.
Chartres Cathedral Cathedral de Notre Dame. "dedicated to the Blessed Virgin. In the upper church is the chapel of Our Lady of the Pillar and in the lower church one honoring ?Virgini Pariturae,? at which it is said the Druids paid honor to the seated virgin with a child on her knees, in the small grotto that enclosed her. Early in A.D. 300 a Christian church was built over that grotto. In 1195 the present cathedral was begun and was finally completed in A.D. 1250. The stained-glass jeweled windows represent in detail the life and perfections of Mary, Virgin and Mother. Chartres also has Mary's own veil to show pilgrims, contained in a magnificent reliquary. This relic belonged to Charlemagne (742-814), who had it transferred from Aachen to Chartres in 876. The second outstanding relic of Chartres is the statue of the Black Virgin, the "Notre Dame-du-Pilier" in the upper church, the Mother holding her Infant Son on the left while her right hand holds a gold scepter. The niche that holds them is filled with token hearts of gold, offerings for the cures wrought over the centuries through Mary's intercession"
City of Luxembourg Notre-Dame Cathedral: "At the end of the 18th century, the church received the miraculous image of the Maria Consolatrix Afflictorum, the patron saint of both the city and the nation." The statue of the Virgin Mary is an object of pilgrimage and is carried around in the yearly procession during the Octave, the largest religious festival in the Grand Duchy.
Ferrara The Sanctuary of Santa Maria in Aula Regia in Comacchio. On the altar there is an altarpiece represented by a statue dedicated to the Blessed Virgin, in terracotta, from the Renaissance period. This work, venerated by the citizens with the title that gives its name to the sanctuary, is the protector of the city.
Kremlin and Red Square Red Square. Historically the entrance gate known as "Resurrection gate" contained the Iviron Chapel with a replica of a miracle working Marian icon the original of which is in Iveron Monastery Mt Athos. The gate and chapel was knocked down in 1931 by Stalin to ease access for tanks taking part in parades. It and replica chapel were rebuilt in the 1990s together with a replavcemtn icon painted on Mt Athos
Mount Athos The entire mountain is known as the "Garden of the Mother of God" and its Marian connections are the reason for its existance as a holy site - "According to the legend Panagia, the Virgin Mary and Mother of God, was sailing accompanied by St John the Evangelist on her way from Joppa to Cyprus to visit Lazarus. When the ship was blown out of course to then pagan Athos it was forced to drop anchor near the port of Klement, close to the present monastery of Iviron. The Virgin walked ashore and, overwhelmed by the wonderful and wild natural beauty of the mountain she blessed it and asked her Son for it to be her garden. A voice was heard; "let this place be your inheritance and your garden, a paradise and a haven of salvation for those seeking to be saved". Since that moment the mountain was consecrated as the garden of the Mother of God and is out of bounds to any other women. "
Padua’s fourteenth-century fresco cycles Padua's Duomo is dedicated to the Assumption of Mary. One of the chapels in the cathedral is dedicated to Our Lady of Miracles and displays a miraculous icon of the Virgin with the baby Jesus.
Paris, Banks of the Seine Cathedral Notre Dame de Paris
Reims Cathedral Notre Dame
Rome Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore - the first Marina church in Rome which houses the "Salus Populi Romani", the most important Marian icon in the city. Our Lady of the Catacombs "Shrine in the cemetery of St. Priscilla in Rome. Beneath the basilica of St. Sylvester and above the cemetery is a fresco painting of the Blessed Virgin holding the Child Jesus on her knee. It is considered one of the first images of the Madonna, dating from about A.D. 170. Though the colors have faded and the features are blurred, it is a witness to the Church's ancient devotion to Mary. The figure standing at her left is most likely the prophet Isaiah, who foretold the Virginal conception of the Messiah."
Route of Santiago de Compostela Lugo Cathedral is dedicated to the Virgin Mary ("Catedral de Santa María de Lugo"). The cathedral houses the Chapel of the Virgin of the Big Eyes ("Virgen de los Ojos Grandes"). She is the patron saint of the city of Lugo.
Siena Siena Cathedral is "dedicated from its earliest days as a Roman Catholic Marian church, and now dedicated to the Assumption of Mary."
Strasbourg Cathedrale Notre-Dame-de-Strasbourg
Syracuse The church of Santa Maria dei Miracoli "was built at the site of a prior church dedicated to St George (...). The new dedication was adopted when icon of the Madonna, housed in the church, was said to have led to the cessation of a season of the plague in 1500–1501." (wiki)
Urbino Urbino Cathedral is dedicated to the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Valletta Church of Our Lady of Liesse


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