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Église Notre-Dame de l'Assomption

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The Église Notre-Dame de l'Assomption is a Roman Catholic parish church of the town of Rouffach in southern Alsace. It is one of the largest medieval churches in the Haut-Rhin département of France. The church is also known as Saint-Arbogast Church . It lies on the "Route Romane d'Alsace". Although work started in the 11th century and was carried on with interruptions until 1870, the building remains unfinished.
The church is made of yellow and pink sandstone and was built in the Romanesque and Gothic styles, with Neo-Gothic additions. The oldest part of the building, the transept, dates from the second half of the 11th century; the nave is from the 12th and 13th century and displays both late Romanesque walls and early Gothic side portals; the choir is in late Gothic style. Work on the building both outside and inside continued until 1508; however, the twin-towered façade remained unfinished. A rood screen that had been built around 1300 was demolished in the 18th century and only two lateral staircases remain. Notre-Dame de l'Assomption suffered severe damage during the French Revolution and now appears relatively unadorned on both the outside and the inside. The large-scale volume of the church and the presence of several medieval building styles appear all the more evidently to the visitor. The Church is listed as a Monument historique since 1841 by the French Ministry of Culture. A comprehensive restoration of the building, which was undertaken from 1866 by the French architect Maximilien Émile Mimey, had to be stopped in 1870 because of the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War. The planned heightening and completion of the double-towered façade was never carried out. Only the crest of the north tower was completed, in pink Vosges sandstone, in striking colour contrast to the yellow tower base. A sacristy was added to the building after 1918. The north tower is 56 metres high, the south tower only 42 metres . The top of the octagonal crossing tower, which was restored in 1854, reaches a height of 68 meters.


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