The exterior is stunning.
Strange to reflect then that it has been even more so... and much less so.
Originally the statues were painted against the gold of gilded backgrounds.
By 1841 however - the time that Victor Hugo was writing his story of Quasimodo - the building was in a terrible state and King Louis-Philippe started a 23-year restoration.
The colour was not restored however, not just here but in most western churches and cathedrals.