Girona Cathedral

The Cathedral of Saint Mary of Girona is the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Girona, located in Girona, Catalonia, Spain. Its interior includes the widest Gothic nave in the world, with a width of 22 metres (72 ft), and the second widest overall after that of St. Peter's Basilica.

Its construction was first started in the 11th century in Romanesque style, and later continued in the 13th century in Gothic style. Of the original Romanesque edifice only the 12th century cloister and the bell tower remain. The Cathedral was completed in the 18th century. A primitive Christian church existed here before the Islamic conquest of Iberia, after which it was converted into a mosque in 717. The Franks reconquered the city in 785 under Charlemagne, and the church was reconsecrated in 908. The church and its cloister were built until 1064, in Romanesque style. The bell tower was completed in 1117. The church has a Baroque façade (begun in 1606, finished in 1961 in the upper part ), preceded by a staircase completed in 1607. The sculptures decorating the three orders of the façade were executed by local sculptors in the 1960s. Other exterior features include the Gothic portal of St. Michael, in the northern side, and the southern portico of the Apostles, from the 14th century.

The church has two bell towers. The oldest one, entitled to Charlemagne, is the surviving one of the two once featured by the first Romanesque church (the other disappeared in the 14th century). Begun in the early 11th century, it has a square plan with six levels separated by friezes with Lombard bands, and with double mullioned windows. The new bell tower, begun in 1590 and completed (with a changed design) in the 18th century, has an octogonal plan. It houses six bells, the oldest one dating to 1574.

The interior's single nave is surmounted by cross vaults, supported by Gothic buttresses. The side walls feature a triforium with stained glass ogival windows. The apse is separated by the nave by a large wall, characterized by a large central rose window (1705, dedicated to St. Michael Archangel) flanked by two smaller ones at the sides. The polygonal apse is in turn flanked by two short galleries, with ogival arches as entrances, which correspond to the original aisles of the Romanesque edifice and introduce to the ambulatory. The latter is divided by piers with trapezoidal vaults, aligned with the ray of the apse's trapezoidal vaults, and which form ten radial chapels. The high altar, in white marble, dates to the 11th century. Other artworks include the Gothic sarcophagus of Berenguer d'Anglesola (died 1418), by Pere Oller, in the chapel of Isabella of Portugal, the Chapel of All Saints (1376)

The Romanesque cloister is notable, featuring a series of columns with sculpted capitals. They depict fantastic figures and animals, and vegetable motifs. The frieze has instead scenes from the New Testament. Among the sculptors who worked at the cloister is Arnau Cadell, also author of the cloister of the Monastery of Sant Cugat.

Source of description: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Girona_Cathedral wikipedia

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Architect definition of architect Pere Costa i Cases
Style definitin of style Gothic
Romanesque
Category definition of category church
Material definition of material
marble
stone
Price definition of price gratis
Geographical coordinates 41.9875000, 2.8263890
Address Girona, Plaza de la Catedral 6
Construction dates 1312 -

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