Churches of Mayence, part I


The city of Mayence or Mainz is a beautiful city with a long history. It’s situated on the banks of the river Rhein. Its beautiful center was completely destroyed during WWII but today one can hardly believe this, seeing so many old buildings standing around. They were restored thanks to those “women of the ruins”, who, after having lost their sons and their husbands, gathered their courage along with the remains of the buildings in piles so that these buildings could be later rebuilt. At least the public ones and the churches.
The churches of Mayence are many and of all sorts. The city was in the past, and still is, I believe, a religious centre and an Archbishop’s see. The churches are in their greatest part Catholic but there are some Protestant ones as well and they all dazzle the visitor thanks to their architecture and their interiors.
The Mainzer Dom, the Cathedral of the city, is one of the most important ones in Germany, along with the one in Cologne and another one in the city of Worms. The Cathedral wasn’t spared the bombing, either. But here it stands, an impressive landmark, with its particular rhythm and colour, this pinkish colour one sees in all the buildings of Mainz. The facades of the buildings which surround the Dom are decorated with painted flowers and other designs, similar to the ones you can see in another city on the Rhine, the swiss Basel. Here, at the Dom square of Mainz, there is an open-market once a week and you can’t help admiring its order and cleanliness. Flower sellers offer neatly arranged pots and bouquets, they don’t cry out “come and buy” nor tease the competitors as people do in other countries. Nobody is shouting here, all exchanges take place peacefully as it becomes a church exterior.
A book lover like me can’t help adoring Mainz, the birthplace of Gutenberg who invented movable type. Here you can visit a museum bearing his name; it’s dedicated to him and to the history of books. Here you can also visit the ruins of a church where he is supposed to have been christened, here there is an important University which is also named after him.
Thanks to the many students, Mainz is a very lively city, full of cafes, bars, people who go around giving a certain colour to the narrow or broader streets. As for me, I’m here today to explore those churches I haven’t yet seen.