PHOTOS: The fall of medieval Notre-Dame

Smoke could be seen billowing out from the top of the gothic cathedral, as flames leaped out besides its two bell towers. The cathedral dates back to the 12th century and is famous for featuring in Victor Hugo’s classic novel the Hunchback of Notre-Dame.

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A massive fire broke out in the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris Monday afternoon. Huge clouds of smoke could be seen billowing over the medieval cathedral. (Photo: Reuters)
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The area around the monument has been cleared by the firefighters and a major operation is underway. The cause of the incident, which is being treated as an accident by the police, is not clear. (Reuters)
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André Finot, a spokesman for the cathedral, said in a telephone interview to the New York Times that the spire of the cathedral had caught fire. The cause of the fire remained unknown. (Reuters)
Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral ablaze, part of spire collapses
Video filmed by onlookers and shared on social media showed smoke and flames billowing from the top of the cathedral, engulfing scaffolding and the spire. Firefighters were on the scene, said Finot, who was about 70 feet away from the cathedral. (Reuters)
Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral ablaze, part of spire collapses
Paris’ Mayor Anne Hidalgo took to Twitter to share the news. “A terrible fire is taking place at the Cathedral of Notre-Dame. I ask everyone to respect the security boundaries,” she tweeted. (Reuters)
Paris' Notre Dame Cathedral ablaze, part of spire collapses
The cathedral, one of Paris’s most famous landmarks, is currently undergoing renovation work, and several statues were lifted by crane from the spire last week. (Reuters)
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Expressing pain, French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted, “Our Lady of Paris in flames. The emotion of a whole nation. Thought for all Catholics and for all French. Like all our countrymen, I’m sad tonight to see this part of us burn”. (Reuters)
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Parisians and tourists watched in sheer horror as colossal fire swept through the iconic Notre Dame Cathedral. Some were in tears, others offered prayers as the structure was consumed by the inferno which is now under control, partially extinguished. ” (Reuters)
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The fire that devastated Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris on Monday prompted fund-raising appeals in the United States, as people horrified by the blaze began making commitments to restore a global landmark even before the flames were extinguished, news agency Reuters reported. (Reuters)

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