Glasgow Cathedral is considered the finest building in Scotland to remain substantially unaltered from the 12th and 13th centuries. It is the only mainland medieval cathedral in Scotland to have survived the Reformation of 1560. Originally founded in 1136, it replaced an earlier sixth century cemetery consecrated by Saint Ninian. The later Cathedral was dedicated to St Kentigern, meaning “dear friend”. It is said that Saint Mungo died in about 612 near the altar of the cathedral. He is buried in a crypt under the cathedral, which drew pilgrims until the Reformation in 1560. The main body of the cathedral is Gothic and succeeds in being both massively plain and elaborate. It is 285 feet long and the nave is 100 feet high. The choir and nave are separated by a pulpitum (screen), again the only one of its kind to survive in Scotland. In 1560 Protestant reformers removed altars from the nave but further damage was stopped by the guilds of the City who stood guard against the reformers destroying the cathedral. Around 1406 the cathedral was struck by lightning with the 15th century spire having to be replaced. Recently the exterior stonework has been clean and restored. The Cathedral recently held the 2014 commemoration of the UK’s First World War commemorations.
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