A Romano-Byzantine building erected in Monaco in 1903 under the principality of Charles III, the Cathedral of Our Lady Immaculate of Monaco is the main church of the Monégasque archdiocese.
In 1868, the territory of the Principality of Monaco was separated from the diocese of Nice. This led to the decision to demolish the Church of Saint Nicholas, steeped in six centuries of history, in order to build what was to become the cathedral. Thus, on 6 January 1875, Prince Charles III laid the first stone. It is dedicated to Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception and – as secondary patrons – St. Nicholas and St. Benedict. However, it was not until 11 June 1911 that the cathedral was consecrated.
Built in La Turbie stone, it has an inscription at the entrance mentioning the important dates of its construction. At its four extremities, the symbols of the Evangelists stand on the roof. Overhanging the central and side doors are sculptures depicting scenes from the life of Mary and reminding us that the cathedral is dedicated to her. In addition, in the alley next to the building, a bell from the former Church of St. Nicholas can be seen. Today, the cathedral is situated on the rock of Monaco and hosts the pontifical offices during major religious festivals. An essential element of the Principality’s identity, it is, according to Prince Albert II, “the symbol of a strong attachment to our roots and our Christian faith. »
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