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Here's what Notre Dame looks like after a 9-hour fire

Four hundred firefighters managed to save the structure as well as several important pieces of religious art.

by Emma Ockerman
Apr 16 2019, 5:22pm

As black smoke was still clearing from the Paris skyline Tuesday morning, firefighters and other experts stepped inside Notre Dame to assess the destruction from the nine-hour fire that burned into the night. The structure remained largely intact, but no one knows how long — or how many hundreds of millions of dollars — rebuilding the 850-year-cathedral will take.

Remarkably, the building’s iconic bell towers and facade — including its priceless, stained-glass rose windows — survived the blaze. The same can’t be said for the majority of the cathedral’s roof and its spire, which both collapsed in the fire Monday evening.

"When you see it from the outside, it's still standing, and that is quite a miracle," Valérie Pécresse, president of the Île-de-France region that encompasses Paris, told ABC's "Good Morning America.” As Notre Dame still smoldered, President Macron promised to rebuild, and at least 700 million euros have been donated to the restoration efforts.

By the time Parisians woke up Tuesday, 400 firefighters, working around the clock, had finally extinguished the last of the flames. No one died, although one firefighter was reportedly injured. Officials believe the fire started accidentally, but the cause is still under investigation.

Several important religious relics, notably the crown of thorns Jesus supposedly wore during his crucifixion — as well the tunic Louis IX wore when he brought the crown to Notre Dame — had also been saved and temporarily relocated to the Louvre.

In the meantime, French officials will have to act fast to prevent further damage; the interior is vulnerable to water damage now that the roof is destroyed, according to CNN. And the Beachwood beams that held up the structure of that roof could be difficult to replace: Bertrand de Feydeau, vice president of the charity Fondation du Patrimoine, told CNN that France no longer has any trees of that size.

Here’s what the building looked like Tuesday morning:

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Notre Dame cathedral is pictured from the top of the Montparnasse tower, Tuesday April 16, 2019 in Paris. Firefighters declared success Tuesday morning in an over 12-hour battle to extinguish an inferno engulfing Paris' iconic Notre Dame cathedral that claimed its spire and roof, but spared its bell towers. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
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Notre Dame cathedral is pictured from the top of the Montparnasse tower, Tuesday April 16, 2019 in Paris. Firefighters declared success Tuesday morning in an over 12-hour battle to extinguish an inferno engulfing Paris' iconic Notre Dame cathedral that claimed its spire and roof, but spared its bell towers. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)
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The cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris is seen the day after the massive fire that ravaged its roof on April 16, 2019 in Paris, France. A fire broke out on Monday afternoon and quickly spread across the building, collapsing the spire. The cause is unknown but officials said it was possibly linked to ongoing renovation work. (Photo by Chesnot/Getty Images)
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Damage caused to Notre-Dame Cathedral following a major fire yesterday on April 16, 2019 in Paris, France. A fire broke out on Monday afternoon and quickly spread across the building, causing the famous spire to collapse. The cause is unknown but officials have said it was possibly linked to ongoing renovation work. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
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Damage caused to Notre-Dame Cathedral following a major fire yesterday on April 16, 2019 in Paris, France. A fire broke out on Monday afternoon and quickly spread across the building, causing the famous spire to collapse. The cause is unknown but officials have said it was possibly linked to ongoing renovation work. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
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A crane lifts experts as they inspect the damaged Notre Dame cathedral after the fire in Paris, Tuesday, April 16, 2019. Experts are assessing the blackened shell of Paris' iconic Notre Dame cathedral to establish next steps to save what remains after a devastating fire destroyed much of the almost 900-year-old building. (AP Photo/Kamil Zihnioglu)
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The interior of the Notre-Dame Cathedral is seen through a doorway following a major fire yesterday on April 16, 2019 in Paris, France. A fire broke out on Monday afternoon and quickly spread across the building, causing the famous spire to collapse. The cause is unknown but officials have said it was possibly linked to ongoing renovation work. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
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The interior of the Notre-Dame Cathedral is seen through a doorway following a major fire yesterday on April 16, 2019 in Paris, France. A fire broke out on Monday afternoon and quickly spread across the building, causing the famous spire to collapse. The cause is unknown but officials have said it was possibly linked to ongoing renovation work. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
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Religious artifacts that were saved from Notre-Dame de Paris cathedral are stored in a room of the Paris City Hall on April 16, 2019 in Paris, France. A fire broke out on Monday afternoon and quickly spread across the building, collapsing the spire. The cause is unknown but officials said it was possibly linked to ongoing renovation work. (Photo by Chesnot/Getty Images)
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Employees load religious artifacts saved from Notre-Dame de Paris Cathedral into a truck before being transported to the Louvre Museum on April 16, 2019 in Paris, France. A fire broke out on Monday afternoon and quickly spread across the building, collapsing the spire. The cause is unknown but officials said it was possibly linked to ongoing renovation work. (Photo by Chesnot/Getty Images)

Cover image: Notre Dame cathedral is pictured from the top of the Montparnasse tower, Tuesday April 16, 2019 in Paris. Firefighters declared success Tuesday morning in an over 12-hour battle to extinguish an inferno engulfing Paris' iconic Notre Dame cathedral that claimed its spire and roof, but spared its bell towers. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)