Grand Chandeliers From Around The Globe
Do You Like Shiny Things (Chandeliers)
A fascination with shiny things may make one travel the world to discover the most exquisite of all chandeliers. However, some chandeliers are more than just sparkles on a ceiling. They are history; they are art, and they have a story to tell.
The first known chandeliers ever made were made all the way back in medieval times. They were simple made hangings and adorned a group of candles' burning. The design was so simplistic that they were easily carried from one room to the next.
When the 15th century rolled around, chandeliers had picked up some weight and the design had a sturdier base. These types became a symbol of wealth in palaces and homes of nobility and were made mostly of brass or carved wood.
The popularity of chandeliers kept growing through the decades, becoming more exquisite. Glass making came around in the 18th century, and with that, the most famous type of chandelier to date was made; the crystal chandelier.
I’ve decided to research and find some of these unique chandeliers and the places they are hung from around the world. This is just a list of the ones I’ve researched from around the world in distinct and distant places, with different stories of history to tell.
The Wieliczka(wheel-licks-ka) Salt Mine Chandeliers
Through my research, the first unique chandeliers I came across that have both a great artistic look and are full of history, I discovered in the Wieliczka salt mine in Poland.
Wieliczka is a small town in Poland, and the mine was founded by a local Duke during the twelfth century. He had an interest to mine that richly deposit we know as salt.
This mine employed many miners through the decades until it was finally closed in 1996. The miners through the years have made some beautiful carvings among other things that helped this place become a very popular tourist site.
To get to the wondrous things that the salt mine houses, one has to climb underground one hundred and fifty meters on a wooden staircase.
When you arrive, you will be amazed with your surroundings that is all totally made and carved of salt. The first thing that will catch your eye is the beautiful chandeliers hanging in different parts of the mine. All made of, you guessed it, salt. The most exquisite of all the chandeliers in the salt mines is the one's hanging in the stunning cathedral, with its religious carvings and beautiful décor of salt, these chandeliers radiate.
To make these unique chandeliers, the miners would first extract the rocks of salt, then dissolve it down and extract impurities before carving it into the crystal like chandeliers you see hanging.
It would be my opinion that this place of intrigue will be no disappointment for the adventurer to travel to. The Wieliczka Salt Mines in Poland is rich in art and history, and the chandeliers are definitely a site to see.
The Bone Church Chandelier
The story of this chandelier starts way back in the 13th century following the Abbot of Sedlec’s return home to the monastery after his trip to Palestine. He brought with him soil from the holy land which he sprinkled all around the cemetery located by the Chapel of Saints in the city of Kutna Hora in the Czech Republic.
After this took place the cemetery site became extremely popular, and many central Europeans opted to get buried there. So many were buried there, in fact, that by the 17th century, there was no room left for any more bodies to be placed there. Therefore, the monks then decided to start exhuming the older remains and housing them in the Chapel, now fittingly known as, “The Bone Church,” or “The Bone Chapel.”
This church stores up to 40,000 skeletal remains. When entering this partially underground sanctuary, you will discover these bones piled neatly in each corner, which then brings the floor design to a nought and crosses board shape in which visitors can walk.
One may ask why they chose to fill the sanctuary with the bones of dead souls. And, of course, there is an urban myth attached to this reasoning. The myth tells the tale of a monk gone mad and bringing in the bones to make things out of them.
However, the church also implements great sculptures, chalices, and candelabras, along with a fantastic coat of arms, and the inspiring bone chandelier. These brilliant pieces were constructed not by the monk of the myth, but by a woodcarver named Frantisek Rint. Mr. Rint was hired back in 1870 by the landowners to decorate the church with the bones, every piece to remind visitors and worshipers of human life and the inevitable fate of death.
If visiting the church, it will surely be a most chilling but captivating experience. With the unique grand bone chandelier, the chandelier is not sparkly, but it and the church will be an unforgettable site to see.
Al-Ameen Mosque Chandelier
This one-of-a-kind chandelier is also one of the biggest chandeliers ever made. It is located in Muscat, Oman, in the Al-Ameen Mosque. As I tried to research more about this mosque and this enormous chandelier that hangs in the shrine since November, 2014, I could not find a whole lot of facts about the mosque itself, but I did find a video which states the reason the mosque was built.
I also found that this breathtaking chandelier was designed and brilliantly handcrafted by the Austria Company KNY Designs, and was specifically made for the Al-Ameen mosque.
The chandelier adorns many beautiful gold designs accompanied by 67,000 sparkling Swarovski crystals. This hanging eye candy is a stunning piece of artwork, and KNY Designs should be commended on its outstanding employees who put all their sweat and tears into this absolutely amazing light fixture.
If you are a chandelier lover and a world traveler, this place and this chandelier are not to be missed. However, it is said that if you are not of Muslim religion, you may not be allowed to enter.
Grand Central Station Chandeliers
Located in midtown Manhattan, this train station is packed full of exciting and beautiful history and architecture. Built in 1871, Grand Central Station has been a favorite traveling venue among other things for decades.
I, myself, have never traveled to New York or visited the popular train station. If I was going to take a trip somewhere to see the shiny chandeliers, it would definitely be Grand Central Station.
This historic train station is packed full of art and architecture structures. Besides being a travel station, Grand Central also has a grand atmosphere of shops and dining, as well as events such as fashion shows or holding important fund raisers.
Most all these happenings take place in the beautiful Vanderbilt Hall. The original pink marble surfaces of this 48-foot ceiling hall make a breathtaking display when the outstanding and lavish five gold chandeliers shine down on the room and walls.
When I read about this place, I get so enthralled with the description; this building holds many other treasures such as; tall Corinthian Columns upon entering the station, vaulted ceilings of the zodiac constellations, and the famous Tiffany designed clock.
Yes, I would say it is a must-see for not only chandelier enthusiasts, but for anyone who appreciates art, and architecture, in all manners. This station has it all. Even so, for this article and to catch the chandelier lover's eye, I can say the glimmer of the amazing chandeliers will probably be the icing on the cake on their trip to Grand Central. It’s a lovely place.
All photos and videos courtesty of wikimedia commons, flickr, and youtube. :)
What chandelier did you find most intriguing from the four listed?
Pictures and videos courtesty of; wikimedia commons, flickr, www.spiritsoftheabandoned.com and Missy Smith
Videos courtesy of ; Youtube
My Secret Place
Bored and restless my feet wanted to walk
So, I braved the dark woods no one had gone.
Fighting and raising my legs as I trudged forward
through the forest, my strides filled with wonder.
“A House!” I exclaimed, as I ventured upon an opening.
Immaculate it had once been; it was three stories high,
statues out front, with a five car garage.
Amazed, I looked around astonished by the site of a
run-down dwelling that had found itself lost. Lost
In a wood for I don’t know how many years, but
the intrigue was killing me; I had to go nearer.
I brushed back the cobwebs and grabbed the rusty
door knob, but before I could turn it, the door fell to
the ground; I was startled, and by instinct jumped
at the sound.
I walked inside to vaulted ceilings, a grand staircase,
and a piano still standing. How could something
be so erased, in the middle of the woods out of time
out of place?
A twinkle of something caught my eye, and I looked up to see
a big beautiful site. A chandelier hanging; I could hardly believe,
and I hoped it was still tight as I walked underneath.
Dark came fast and I had to leave, but vowed to
Come back and find a way to clean.
It took me days to return, but to my surprise,
the chandelier was sparkling just like new.
It was quite shocking, I was a bit scared and confused.
Then out of nowhere an old man appeared, he was maybe in his
80s, and he seemed so sincere. With his tattered clothes and smiling
face, he apologized for scaring me; I’m sure it showed on my face.
He told me a story of a wealthy young man who once lived here,
he left one day and just disappeared. His greed drove him
to a world of riches, but it had never brought happiness or a ladies
I not at any time asked how he knew; I just returned often to a delightful
old man, who had welcomed me back with plenty of stories at hand.
We would sit under that chandelier, and watch the sunlight
seep through; it would shine down on the chandelier and bounce
colors off the walls, I never tired of this place at all.
One day, I returned but the old man wasn't there, but I found
an envelope under the chandelier. I opened it up
and almost passed out; I would never have to leave
my brand-new house.
© 2015 Missy Smith