“All around the world, statues crumble for me…”

Contrary to CNN’s breathless claims an hour ago, today’s earthquake did not cause gargoyles to fall off the National Cathedral. However, the spires on the main tower sustained some damage. In the photo below, note the blunted spire on the left and the cockeyed one on the right; the building lost at least three pinnacles.

I spotted what may have been a section of broken stained glass, some rubble on the stairs where part of a spire reportedly fell, at least one other missing piece of ornamental stonework, and cathedral administrators anxiously surveying the foundation for signs of more serious damage.

The yellow-tape perimeter grew larger between 2 and 4 p.m., but the gargoyles all seem to be intact, which isn’t surprising; there’s at least as much unseen stone anchoring each one to the building as there is sticking out of the side.

Those of us for whom the cathedral is indispensable hope that the damage doesn’t extend beyond what we can see.

UPDATE, 10:55 p.m.: The Atlantic Wire has photos of damage at the higher levels and inside the cathedral.

UPDATE #2, AUGUST 24, 2011: The cathedral has a website devoted to earthquake damage; they’re soliciting funds to help with repairs.

One thought on ““All around the world, statues crumble for me…”

  1. We felt it out here in sunny Delaware. The Viking was changing clothes and thought he’d just lost his balance. Maman and I knew something was wrong when our non-rocking chairs started rocking. The nephews napped safely through it.

    Nothing broken and no one hurt, but it’s given the expression “a bit rattled” new meaning.

    I saw a report that the Washington Monument might have developed a lean, though.


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