Patio of the cloister of the royal monastery of Santa Maria de Guadalupe, Spain

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The Royal Monastery of Santa Maria de Guadalupe (Spanish: Real Monasterio de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe) is a Roman Catholic monastic establishment in Guadalupe, Cáceres, a province of the Extremadura autonomous community of Spain. It was one of the most important monasteries in the country for more than four centuries. UNESCO declared it a World Heritage Site in 1993. History

The monastery had its origins in the late 13th century, when a shepherd from Cáceres, named Gil Cordero, discovered on the bank of the Guadalupe River a statue of the Blessed Virgin, which had been apparently hidden by local inhabitants from Moorish invaders in 714. On the site of his discovery a chapel was built, dedicated under the title of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

King Alfonso XI, who visited the chapel more than once, invoked Santa Maria de Guadalupe in the Battle of Rio Salado. After gaining the victory, he ascribed it to the Madonna's intercession, declared the church at Guadalupe a royal sanctuary and undertook an extensive rebuilding program.

In 1389, the Hieronymite monks took over the monastery and made it their principal house. Construction works continued under the auspices of the order's first prior, and in 1474 Henry IV of Castile was entombed in Guadalupe, next to his mother.

The monastery is rich in associations with the New World, where Our Lady of Guadalupe is highly revered in the Mexican Basilica of Guadalupe and elsewhere. It was here, in Extremadura, that Christopher Columbus made his first pilgrimage after discovering America in 1492 and it was here that he first thanked heaven for his discovery.

Even after the monks from Guadalupe founded the famous monastery of Escorial, which was much closer to the royal capital, Madrid, Santa Maria de Guadalupe retained the royal patronage. It remained the most important cloister in Spain until the secularization of monasteries in 1835. In the 20th century, the monastery was revived by the Franciscan Order and Pope Pius XII declared the shrine a "Minor Papal Basilica" in 1955.

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Comments (86)

Jarda cz on November 22, 2013

Very nice photo - LIKE - thanks for your visit, greetings from Bohemia - Jaroslav

Lucien Kivit on November 23, 2013

Jaroslav , thank you for your nice comment and like, greetings Lucien

nunila77 merche on June 9, 2014

Muy hermosa toma de este precioso claustro del Monasterio de Guadalupe. Perfecto juego de luces y sombras. FAV+LIKE. Saludos desde Madrid.

Lucien Kivit on June 11, 2014

Nunila77 , thank you for your nice comment, YS and like , greetings Lucien

Argenna on June 14, 2014


Lucien Kivit on June 16, 2014

Argenna , thank you for liking the picture, greetings Lucien

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Lucien Kivit
Rijkevorsel, België

Photo details

  • Uploaded on November 21, 2012
  • Attribution-No Derivative Works
    by Lucien Kivit
    • Camera: Canon PowerShot A590 IS
    • Taken on 2011/09/15 11:29:44
    • Exposure: 0.001s (1/1000)
    • Focal Length: 5.80mm
    • F/Stop: f/2.800
    • ISO Speed: ISO80
    • Exposure Bias: 0.00 EV
    • No flash