Cathedral: the story of its construction

by David Macaulay

Paperback, 1973




Boston, Houghton Mifflin, 1973.


Text and detailed drawings follow the planning and construction of a magnificent Gothic cathedral in the imaginary French town of Chutreaux during the thirteenth century.

User reviews

LibraryThing member momma2
We really enjoy these books and the videos that are based on them as well. Even though the videos are older and aren't fabulous quality they are interesting stories that combine real footage of cathedrals with a fictional story. These are a wonderful way to look at history and math.
LibraryThing member jaimefabey
Cathedral is about the people in Chutreaux, France in the thirteenth century who built a cathedral to thank God for a good year. While this is an information book it is set almost like a picture book with intricate black and white sketch drawings and a story telling style about the people of the city and building the cathedral.
LibraryThing member ImperfectCJ
I read this aloud to my children (ages 3 and 7) as an addendum to the older one's history lesson for the week. It was recommended in the workbook that accompanies volume 2 of Susan Wise Bauer's The Story of the World, and I'm very glad we picked it up. Both of my kids enjoyed it, and so did I. The drawings are enjoyable and precise, and the text isn't overly wordy. I liked that Macaulay emphasized the participation of three generations of the community in building the cathedral; it helped to put into perspective just how large a project this was.

And I finally learned what exactly a flying buttress is. Maybe I'll recognize them if I ever see a cathedral in person.
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LibraryThing member dukefan86
Facinatingly detailed illustrations of a cathedral in different phases of development and construction! The text was informative, but a little dry at times.
LibraryThing member jjmcgaffey
Interesting! I do like Macaulay - he does a gorgeous job (as usual) of describing the structure of the cathedral from the concept and the foundations up to the arches of the roof, the spires, and the stained glass windows. And the illustrations are full of rich little bits - not just what the text is describing, but the birds in the roof, the way the houses change over the years, all the little details. Worth reading, worth rereading and spending some time examining each illustration in detail.… (more)
LibraryThing member ChelseaLawler
I thought that this story was interesting. It was kind of long and not as captivating as some. It was full of information but it was a bit tough to stay interested. There are lots of fun classroom ideas that can come from this story though. So as long as I could keep my students interested then they could follow it up with fun projects. The artwork was a bit lack luster as well. There was very small black and white pictures in this.… (more)


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