A Jewel Within a Jewel

Sainte-Chapelle, 1242-48, Paris, Ile-de-France 

Built by King Louis IX as a Royal Chapel, this piece of Gothic architecture has been likened to an larger-than-life jewel in its own box. King Louis purchased a highly sought after relic, the crown of thorns purportedly worn by Jesus and wanted the finest reliquary he could get so he had this chapel built with 6,458 square feet of stained glass windows.