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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Visit the Convent of Chagas de Cristo - Nossa Senhora da Conceição (Vila Viçosa)

The Convent of the Stigmata of Christ, located in the Parish of Our Lady of Conception, a religious house was founded in 1514 by D. Jaime, 4. Duke of Braganza.
Later, the monastery was handed over to the nuns of the female order of Santa Clara.
The patronage of the monastery remained in the House of Braganza to the nineteenth century, when it was annexed by the National Treasury. Later, King Carlos would come back to buy it for the House of Braganza. In 1932, the exiled Don Manuel II gave the monastery to the Archbishop of Evora. Its facilities were used for various purposes and are currently undergoing major restoration and reintegration.
The main portal of the church is located on the side wall, a space that takes the greatest architectural role. Various factors and uneven forming its structure. The site reveals a language consisting of Renaissance pilasters flanking a round arch, marked by a pediment highlighted the corners and medallions anthropomorphic. Laterally it must be a rectangular picture window. On the opposite side, the body of the choir and nave is marked by two monumental arches dividing buttress blind. Contiguous stands the tower's four bells, surmounted by vertical hexagonal spire and marked by four pinnacles.
The craft, unique and wide, has an ogival ribbed vaults coverage and artisans, are joining in the art Manueline and revealing a colorful decoration emblematic of classicist Franciscan phytomorphic surrounded by grounds, and small zoomorphic heads of angels. The walls are covered with tiles to the seventeenth century, enhancing the beauty of paintings telling the story of the life of S. Francis of Assisi. Within the nave there are four gilded altars, the two side-seventeenth century, while the other side are the work of the eighteenth century baroque and are framed by ashlars tiles.
The triumphal arch of the chancel is framed with classical motifs in white marble, with coverage of the headboard made by Manueline polinervurada vault. In the nineteenth century, the walls and ceiling of the chancel received neoclassical paintings. The altarpiece is gilded seventeenth century, featuring a screen with the episode of "Incredulity of St. Thomas, in addition to a triangular shrine with a relief of the" Resurrection of Christ. "
The most amazing architectural details of the monastery are revealed in two choirs. The Chapel of St. John the Baptist - showing her beautiful sixteenth-century altarpiece of "St. John on Patmos" and good notes of tiles and frescoes on the vault - connects to the sacristy and cloister, starting from this courtyard access to the amazing chorus down - the pantheon of the most distinguished ladies of the Order of Poor Clares and the House of Braganza, under which lies the crypt of Abbesses. This work is lower choir of the seventeenth century and has vaulted Manueline edge, supported by the central column, the decoration rocaille altered structure of the second half of the eighteenth century.
Access to the monumental choir is conducted by a lavishly decorated antecoro. This wing of the convent is larger than the church, and is covered by a barrel vault with painted baroque motifs of the seventeenth century.
The cloister of the sixteenth century was reformulated in the following century. The claustra consists of two floors and each gallery is divided into five legs buttresses. The ground floor is populated by a double colonnade of round arches, while the upper floor is a rhythmic double rectangular openings separated by pilasters and marble. At the top of the cloister were built other facilities, while the inner space of the galleries has cloistered graves revealing small chapels, altars, murals and other decorations.
Today this monastery serves as the Inn.

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