Open Access Opinion

The Fire at Notre-Dame: Roof

Jacques Heyman*

Cambridge University, United Kingdom

Corresponding Author

Received Date: May 24, 2019;  Published Date: June 03, 2019


The double roof system of the typical Gothic great church–a stone vault surmounted by a timber roof-is both decorative and functional. The steep external roof provides the necessary weather proofing dictated by northern climates (shallow pitches were used for Greek temples); indeed the stone vault, perhaps cracked and in any case not waterproof, itself needs the protection of the outer roof (in Cyprus the Crusader churches, for example Famagusta, hardly need this cover). However timber burns well, and one function of the stone vault is to provide a fire-resistant barrier between the outer roof and the church.

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