Horloge Astronomique De la Cathedrale, Besancon

4.2
#4 of 80 in Things to do in Besancon
Landmark · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
Create an itinerary including Horloge Astronomique De la Cathedrale
The astronomical clock of Besançon is housed in Besançon Cathedral. Besançon's present astronomical clock, made in 1860 by Auguste-Lucien Vérité :fr:Auguste-Lucien Vérité of Beauvais to replace an earlier and unsatisfactory one made by Bernardin in the 1850s, differs from those in Strasbourg, Lyon and Beauvais. The clock is meant to express the theological concept that each second of the day the Resurrection of Christ transforms the existence of man and of the world.
The first astronomical clock installed in Besançon was made between about 1851 and 1857 by a clockmaker called Bernardin, who probably came from Fougerolles and lived in Saint-Loup-sur-Semouse.
Bernardin had exhibited an astronomical clock in 1849 while he was living at Fougerolles The clock he made for Besançon was exhibited in Paris in 1855, where Vérité was also exhibiting and could certainly have seen it. This clock was described in the 1958 article by René Baillaud.
By 1857 Bernardin's clock had stopped working, and Cardinal Mathieu, the Archbishop of Besançon, commissioned a replacement from Vérité, who built it in his workshop in Beauvais. The clock was installed in 1860 but work on it continued until 1863. Immediately after he finished the Besançon commission, Vérité built an even larger, and different, clock, for Beauvais Cathedral.
With our online itinerary creator, Besancon attractions like Horloge Astronomique De la Cathedrale can be center stage of your vacation plans, and you can find out about other attractions like it, unlike it, near it, and miles away.
Source
Create a full itinerary - for free!

Horloge Astronomique De la Cathedrale reviews

Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
291 reviews
Google
4.2
TripAdvisor
  • We were in Besancon for a few days, on our way home from the Cote d'Azur. Travel on the tram is easy in that town. A few things do not start until April 1 and we were there from the evening of March.....  more
    We were in Besancon for a few days, on our way home from the Cote d'Azur. Travel on the tram is easy in that town. A few things do not start until April 1 and we were there from the evening of March.....  more »
  • It is worth searching this out in the cathedral. It is quite unlike that which we had seen in Beauvais Cathedral. We nearly missed seeing it as the room in which is was housed was about to close... 
    It is worth searching this out in the cathedral. It is quite unlike that which we had seen in Beauvais Cathedral. We nearly missed seeing it as the room in which is was housed was about to close...  more »
Google
  • Wow, what a beaut! This clock has been incredibly well preserved and the guided tours are top-notch. The tours start 10 minutes before the hour so you can see the big hooplah that occurs when the clock strikes the hours. The docent is thoroughly knowledgeable of the clock's history and inner-workings. As it is one of the four major astronomical clocks in France, it would be a mistake to skip out on a visit here- so worth the couple euros!.
  • An absolute marvel of clockwork. One must go through the cathedral main doors and through and up a passage way to a room where the clockwork is found. Or you can go up the stairs on the outside and on the right side of the cathedral. Although there's a page of explanation in English the discussion is entirely in French.

Plan your trip to Besancon

  • Get a personalized trip
    A full day by day itinerary based on your preferences
  • Customize it
    Refine your trip. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it
    Choose from the best hotels and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it
    Everything in one place. Everyone on the same page.