Of course the fact that the Chapel is covered with bones is really interesting, but the beautiful azulejos (tiles) on the walls should also deserve a tip here on VT. There are several throughout the chapel to be admired. Together with the bones they look spectacular. Enjoy!
A very special place in Evora is the Chapel of Bones in which the chapel walls are entirely covered with bones and skulls. Walking through it you will have a feeling of fascination as this kind of place des not exist so many times, but on the other hand it is really strange. Well, I guess all this was the meaning by the one who constructed this building in the 16th century. A Franciscan monk wanted to give a meassage to the people and the monks in his monastery that life on earth is not endless. A sentence that warns the visitor says: "Nós ossos que aqui estamos pelos vossos esperamos" (“We, the bones that are here, await yours.")
Glad my fellow VTers and me could leave again.
It is calculated that about 5000 skeletons make up the 'decoration' of the chapel.
Maybe it would be advisable for the most impressionable people not to visit this chapel - you will be submerged under thousands of bones, in a gloomy but also harmonious image.
The bones are not only piled, they were used to artistically compose structures, rhythms and images with aesthetics concerns.
The church Igreja Sao Francisco, adjoins the Capela dos Ossos and it is quite beautiful and peaceful as a church is thought to be. The entrance area to the Capela dos Ossos is also very nicely collonaded and I enjoyed the play of sunlight between the collums. Even when you get to the actual entrance to the Capela you would never suspect what lies beyond that portal before you.
Okay, call me weird, but I just had to show you more of the Capela dos Ossos, a chapel made out of BONES, come on now, WHY.
"We bones that are here, waiting for you", how creepy can you get, sounds like one of those scare you out of your pants movies...
Sorry I just had to put this first, I myself have never seen anything so scary and macbre...
For years I volunteered on the Desert Alpine Rescue Team and saw many disturbing things, but actually MAKING A BUILDING OUT OF BONES, that tops anything. Yes, yes the entire wall surface and columns that support the roof are covered in bones.
The Capela dos Ossos (Chapel of the Bones) is a part of the Igreja de São Francisco church.
It was built in the 16th century at the time of King Philips. The interior is completely covered with human bones from the local graveyard.
At the entrance you are welcomed with the following text: WE BONES THAT ARE HERE, WE ARE WAITING FOR YOURS.
Mo-Sa: 9AM - 12.45PM and 2.30PM - 5.10PM
Su: 10AM -12.45PM and 2.30PM - 5.10PM
Admission fee: Euro 2.00; Pictures Euro 1.00
This is a chapel with the walls built of bones, artistically arranged. You can see skulls and thighbones and a nice little reminder of where you are going to end up and what you will look like when you are dead. I walked out of there feeling just a tad grateful I was still alive and that the sun was shining. An interesting philosophical debate as to whether we should forget about death and concentrate on living or regard it as part of life was going on in my head at this point. Interesting for me, downright morbid for someone else I would imagine.
Go and see it, see what thoughts it brings up in your mind.
The chapel of bones was my favorite and also the main reason for me to book the VT-tour from Lisbon to Evora. I saw a similar church, decorated with bones in Sedlec/Czech Rep. but the one in Evora is somehow more spooky, because the bones seem to be part of the construction with columns made of bones etc. Of course they were just attached afterwards and I learned as well that these are the bones of 5000 monks from Evora.
There is another bone-church in Sedlec/Czech Republic
read more about it in my Sedlec-page!
Sala do Capitulo is the entrance-hall of the bonechurch and there you will see this beautiful altar with 2 small angels sitting in front (one of them in my main pic). This part of the bone-chapel is free of charge and in its back you will have to pay the entrancefee of 2 euros. Once that you payed the entrance you will be able to step into the backpart of this altar in Sala do Capitulo, before entering the chapel with the bones.
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