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High Middle Ages

Cathedral: The Story of Its Construction
Author: Macaulay, David
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Time Period: High Middle Ages
Time Frame: 1252
Geographic Area: Europe
Country: France
Topics: Medieval Life, Cathedrals, Building
Genre: Fiction
Reading Age: Lower Elementary, Middle Grade
Format: Picture Book
Published: 1973

World History > High Middle Ages

A 1974 Caldecott Honor Book

Readers worldwide recognize Caldecott Medal winner David Macaulay's imaginary Cathedral of Chutreaux. This critically acclaimed book has been translated into a dozen languages and remains a classic of children's literature and a touchstone for budding architects. Cathedral's numerous awards include a prestigious Caldecott Honor and designation as a New York Times Best Illustrated Book of the Year for Macaulay's intricate pen-and-ink illustrations.

In scarcely 80 pages, Macaulay takes us back in time to the year 1252 in the fictional French village of Chutreaux where the people decide to build the "longest, widest, highest and most beautiful cathedral in all of France" for the glory of God.

Journey back to centuries long ago and visit the fictional people of twelfth-, thirteenth-, and fourteenth-century Europe whose dreams, like Cathedral, stand the test of time.

"This marvelous book recreates the building of a French Gothic cathedral from the hewing down of half a forest to the placement of the last sheet of lead on the spire. Macaulay uses voluminous knowledge and pen-and-ink sketches accompanied by a brief clear narrative." -- Time

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