Flames ripped through one of the world’s most visited and treasured landmarks Monday as Paris’ famed Notre Dame cathedral caught fire and burned for several hours.
The centuries-old cathedral caught fire Monday evening, local time, just days before Easter. Authorities were investigating the cause of the blaze, and believe it was due to a $6.8M renovation going on in the landmark.
The infrastructure of the cathedral had been in decline recently, having survived since the 13th century and standing through historic events including the French Revolution. As the fire raged on, hundreds of Parisians and tourists took to the streets, singing hymns and praying together.
By Monday afternoon, the spire of the cathedral and the roof had both collapsed as firefighters scrambled to figure out a solution to contain the fire. According to NBC News, authorities feared that the cathedral — home to priceless works of art, stained glass windows and relics traced back to Jesus Christ — would not be able to be saved.
Thankfully, no deaths or injuries were reported and authorities worked tirelessly to keep the crowds at bay from one of the city’s top landmarks, which CNN reports attracts 13 million visitors annually.
Celebrities and social media users alike took to Twitter and Instagram Monday to express their sadness at watching the landmark’s destruction in real time.
Check out some of the heartbreaking tributes below: