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Holy Trinity Anglican Cathedral National Historic Site of Canada

31 des Jardins Street, Québec, Quebec, G1R, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1989/01/01

Exterior façade photo; Parks Canada/Parcs Canada 1980
Holy Trinity Anglican Cathedral, Québec, QC
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Other Name(s)

Holy Trinity Anglican Cathedral National Historic Site of Canada
Holy Trinity Anglican Cathedral

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1800/01/01 to 1804/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2007/04/25

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

This relatively small and simple stone church occupies a central location on the place d'Armes within the old city of Quebec. Sited behind low stone walls within a treed green space, the cathedral is set apart from the surrounding tightly built urban fabric. Its simplified Palladian exterior and elegant interior speaks strongly to its British roots. The designation refers to the church building on its legal property.

Heritage Value

Holy Trinity Anglican Cathedral was designated a national historic site because it is a very fine, well-sited and largely unaltered example of the auditory hall type of church and because its construction heralded the introduction of the British classicism to Quebec City.

Built between 1800 and 1804 by two Royal Artillery engineers, Captain William Hall and Major William Robe, the refined Palladian style design was adapted from St. Martin-in-the-Fields in London and features a rectangular plan, tripartite nave with lateral galleries and Palladian-inspired decorative elements including a three-bay, pedimented facade divided by arcading with Ionic pilasters. The cathedral has suffered only minor changes, some of which include embellishment of the facade by Quebec architect Francois Baillargé. Sited on former Récollet property, the cathedral occupies a central location within the old city, a designated World Heritage Site.

Source: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, Feb. 1989

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements contributing to the heritage value of this site include:
- its location on the place d'Armes;
- its setting within a walled green space;

- its stone construction;
- its two-storey, rectangular massing under a pitched roof;
- its centrally mounted spire, staged in the Wren-Gibbsian manner;
- its pedimented three-bay facade with symmetrically spaced openings within arcading marked by Ionic pilasters;
- its round headed windows, many with memorial stained glass;
- its auditory-hall style interior with broad nave and three-sided gallery;
- its vaulted ceiling carried by Ionic columns;
- its semi-circular apse with Venetian-styled window;
- its fine interior woodwork, including the box pews.




Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Historic Sites and Monuments Act

Recognition Type

National Historic Site of Canada

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design

Function - Category and Type


Religion, Ritual and Funeral
Religious Facility or Place of Worship


Architect / Designer



Royal Artillery engineers, Captain William Hall and Major William Robe

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

National Historic Sites Directorate, Canadian Inventory of Historic Building Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 525, 25 Eddy Street, Hull, Quebec

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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