Notre Dame de Paris 1163-

Authorities responded to a massive fire at Paris’ Notre Dame Cathedral on Monday that spread rapidly through the historic monument, toppling its spire and appearing to spread inside one of its two towers.

While authorities feared in the fire’s early hours that the entire historic monument could be destroyed, city officials confirmed around 11 p.m. local time that the main structure was “saved and preserved.”

By early Tuesday morning, Paris firefighters said in a tweet that it took nearly 400 firefighters more than nine hours to extinguish the blaze. Two police officers and a firefighter were slightly injured.

The gravity of the fire is still to be determined, but firefighters said the blaze began in the cathedral’s attic. About two-thirds of the building’s roof was destroyed.

The fire is “potentially linked” to renovation work in the building, firefighters told Agence France-Presse.

Instead of showing pictures of the devastated Notre Dame, I thought I’d share some of the pictures from my visit to the cathedral during my trip to Paris in August 2011:

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Approximately 13 million people visit the monument every year.

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