Browsing Category : Cathedrals and Churches

Turrets and Saints: Montpellier Cathedral


Cathedral of St Peter, Cathédrale Saint-Pierre, Montpellier, France From the outside, the Cathedral of Montpellier is probably one of the most peculiar I’ve ever seen.  In fact, it really doesn’t look like it should be a cathedral, not least because the ecclesiastical building joins on almost seamlessly with the university building to its side. And somehow, it does suit Montpellier.…

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St Roch: A Church for Montpellier’s Saint


Church of St Roch of Montpellier, Église Saint-Roch de Montpellier, Montpellier, France It’s not often that you can walk in the footsteps of saints. The St Roch church is a product of the 19th century.  It was created by donations from the public and built between 1860-1868 by J Cassan, on the site of a church destroyed during the siege…

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Views and Cenotaphs: Lisbon’s Pantheon


Church of Santa Engrácia, Igreja de Santa Engrácia, Lisbon, Portugal There is an old joke in Portugal; if something is never completed, it’s like the Santa Engrácia works (Obras de Santa Engrácia).  The poor Santa Engrácia.  Construction started in 1681… and wasn’t finished until 1966.  That is quite an achievement in procrastination. There is a legend explaining why the church was so…

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It’s All About the Details in St Jerónimos Monastery in Lisbon


Jerónimos Monastery, Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, Lisbon, Portugal One of most famous sites of Lisbon is the Jerónimos Monastery – a late Gothic “Manueline” style building that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  It’s big.  It’s grand.  It’s odd. The monastery was built on a site occupied by a church dedicated to Santa Maria de Belém.  Its monks were members of the Order of Christ…

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Cosy and Striking: Stockholm Cathedral


The Great Church, Storkyrkan, Stockholm, Sweden Dedicated to St Nicholas, the large church in the centre of Stockholm is popularly called Storkyrkan, and more informally still, Stockholm Cathedral.  Tradition has it that it was originally built by the legendary founder of the city, Birger Jarl, and it’s first mentioned in written sources in 1279.  Interestingly, it was the only parish…

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Franciscan Church: Behind A Plain Wall in Dubrovnik


Franciscan Church, Franjevačka crkva, Dubrovnik, Croatia Near the beginning of the Stradun by the Pile Gate, there is a large, plain stretch of building, punctuated by two doors: one has a fairly standard and classical portal – but the other is somewhat more special. This unprepossessing building is actually the church of the Franciscans, whose monastery is just behind.  The…

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Franciscan Apothecary in Dubrovnik


Franciscan Monastery, Franjevački samostan, Dubrovnik, Croatia Snuck in between the Holy Saviour Church and the Franciscan Church is a little passageway that leads to the latter’s monastery.  This building also contains what is proudly proclaimed to be the third oldest, still functioning, pharmacy in Europe.  And it’s all very pretty. The Cloisters The monastery was originally built outside the Ragusan…

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