top cx logo
cx logo
Explorearrow down
search icon
arrow down

Green ray of light will appear on Christ statue

The phenomenon is unique in France

Strasbourg Cathedral offers a great light show from next Wednesday.

For the spring equinox, a ray of green light will appear on the statue of the Christ.

The phenomenon happens twice a year during the autumn and the spring equinox.

Strasbourg resident Maurice Rosart discovered it in 1972 and made it public in 1984. He said: “I have been passionate about cathedrals since my childhood. So I was looking at cathedrals and the way they were built and I discovered this green light. It is very interesting to see how Christ is associated with light.”

Hundreds of people come every year to see the equinox light and it is a chance for visitors and photographers to catch the moment. Mr Rosart added: “I would like to share with everyone how beautiful it is.”

Mr Rosart has been studying the phenomenon for years and believes it was all thought up by the architect Gustave Klotz (who studied arts in Rome), although nothing has been officially proven.

“The green ray of light in Strasbourg Cathedral equals the most beautiful Italian meridians”, said Mr Rosart. As every cathedral, Strasbourg has its own meridian which is shown on this unique green ray of light. In Italy, meridians are very present in churches. They are more noticeable because noble materials such as marble or gold are used. They always indicate time of equinoxes, like in Strasbourg.

On the first day of spring, the green light will be above the statue of the Christ at exactly 11:38, if the sun shines. The ray of green light will then move down on the statue during six days.

The ray of light comes from outside and goes through the stained glass where Juda is represented. It creates a green light through the colour of his left foot which is reflected on the statue at the centre of the Cathedral.

During the autumn equinox, the green light goes up instead of down on the statue.

Stay informed:
Sign up to our free weekly e-newsletter
Subscribe to access all our online articles and receive our printed monthly newspaper The Connexion at your home. News analysis, features and practical help for English-speakers in France

Resident or second-home owner in France?
Benefit from our daily digest of headlines and how-to's to help you make the most of life in France
By joining the newsletter, you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy
See more popular articles
The Connexion Help Guides
featured helpguide
Income Tax in France 2023 (for 2022 income)*
Featured Help Guide
- Primarily aimed at Britons, covers pensions, rent, ISAs, shares, savings and interest - but also contains significant general information pertinent to readers of other nationalities - Overview of online declarations + step-by-step guide to the French printed forms - Includes updates given automatically after this year's site opened
Get news, views and information from France