The construction of this cathedral, known as the Collegiale of Neuchâtel,
was begun about 1185.
Cathedrals could take a long time to build in those days considering
each stone had to be hand worked, and more importantly, the money
for the building of the church was usually not all available at
the beginning of construction. This reminds one of grand building
projects of our own day with their 'cost over-runs' and need for
additional money. Despite being incomplete the cathedral was consecrated
in 1276, and the building of the cathedral continued.
Louise of Neuchâtel
is responsible for the Monument of the Counts a group of statues
and reliefs sculpted in the mid-1300s, and still to be seen to the
left of the altar. The south chapels were built sometime in the 1400s,
and the raising and crowning of the south bell tower was completed
During the Reformation in the 1500s the cathedral was emptied of all
its religious art in an act of over-religious fervor by protestants.
(I can say this freely about the protestants because I count myself
among that particular religious sect.) Thus the church, though still
beautiful, is not as beautiful as it once was with most of its artwork
The years 1672-1678 saw continued destruction with the removal all carvings of the tympanum of St. Peter's door, and the whitewashing of the walls and vaults. The galleries in the western part of the nave were constructed at this time. The pipe organ was installed over the western gallery in 1750.