Chapel of Bones, Évora

4.5 out of 5 stars 24 Reviews

Praça 1º de Maio, S. Fransisco church

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  • Capela dos Ossos - Évora
    Capela dos Ossos - Évora
    by pieter_jan_v
  • Chapel of Bones
    by orlandom
  • Chapel of Bones
    by Oleg_D.
  • Oleg_D.'s Profile Photo

    Capela dos Ossos

    by Oleg_D. Updated Sep 18, 2014

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    Capela dos Ossos or the Chapel of Bones belongs to Igreja Real de São Francisco (Royal Church of Saint Francis). Thais chapel is famous because of its ossuary constructed out of the human bones. But before to get in the ossuary you go through the cloister and enter to baroque chapel itself. In the chapel over the entrance to ossuary you will be able to observe the painted rhyme reminding visitors of their own mortality: Nós ossos que aqui estamos, pelos vossos esperamos: "Our bones that are lay here wait for yours!"
    Visitors are allowed to take noncommercial photos without flash light and tripod.
    Open: Mon-Sat 09:00–12:45 and 14:30–17:45, Sunday same hours but opens at 10:00
    Edmission is1 Euro

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    Capela dos Ossos/Ossuary

    by Oleg_D. Updated Sep 18, 2014

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    Well, the walls and central pillars are of Capela dos Ossos or the Chapel of Bones are constructed out of human skulls and other parts of skeletons, held together by cement. That’s why this chapel of the church of São Francisco (Saint Francis) attracts so many tourists. According to some sources there were used five thousand human skeletons to construct this ossuary. All these bones belonged to the citizens of Evora who were the laymen. All bones of the monks who assembled the chapel are not on display, they are in a small white coffin situated in the chapel. In addition to all the bones there are two full corpses hanging high on a wall. Their identities are unknown, although some evil tongues say one popular story which says they are an adulterous man and his infant son, both cursed by jealous wife of that man. Although these are only unconfirmed rumors. According to Christian rules, the incorruptibility is one of necessary signs of the holiness.
    Visitors are allowed to take noncommercial photos without flash light and tripod.
    Open: Mon-Sat 09:00–12:45 and 14:30–17:45, Sunday same hours but opens at 10:00

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    Thousands of bones

    by solopes Updated Dec 20, 2013

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    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.

    Evora - Portugal Evora - Portugal Evora - Portugal Evora - Portugal Evora - S. Francisco (Jordan
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    Chapel of Bones --- Azulejos

    by gubbi1 Written May 17, 2012

    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!

    Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT
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    Chapel of Bones

    by gubbi1 Written May 17, 2012

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    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.

    Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT Chapel of Bones, ��vora, PT
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  • Martin_S.'s Profile Photo

    Capela dos Ossos, the benign side

    by Martin_S. Written Jul 17, 2011

    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.

    Igreja Sao Francisco, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos columns, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos entrance, Evora, Portugal
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    Capela dos Ossos (Chapel of Bones) more of

    by Martin_S. Written Jul 17, 2011

    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...

    Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal
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    Capela dos Ossos (Chapel of Bones)

    by Martin_S. Written Jul 17, 2011

    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.

    Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal Capela dos Ossos, Evora, Portugal
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  • pieter_jan_v's Profile Photo

    Capela dos Ossos (Chapel of the Bones)

    by pieter_jan_v Updated Jun 13, 2010

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    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.

    Visiting hours:
    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

    Capela dos Ossos - ��vora Capela dos Ossos - ��vora Capela dos Ossos - ��vora Capela dos Ossos - ��vora Capela dos Ossos - ��vora
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    Chapel of Bones

    by Suet Written Oct 1, 2009

    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.

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  • globetrott's Profile Photo

    The chapel of bones was my favorite

    by globetrott Updated Jun 8, 2009

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    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!

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    Sala do Capitulo - the entrance of the bonechurch

    by globetrott Written Jun 6, 2009

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    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.

    Sala do Capitulo of the bone-church Sala do Capitulo of the bone-church Sala do Capitulo of the bone-church the backpart of the altar in Sala do Capitulo the backpart of the altar in Sala do Capitulo
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  • Svitata's Profile Photo

    Capela Dos Ossos

    by Svitata Written Nov 20, 2008

    This is probably the most interesting chapel for me because it is completely covered by the bones of more than 5000 monks collected from various places all over Evora. There is a quiet grimness about the place but yet offers a certain sense of serenity.

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  • cachaseiro's Profile Photo

    The bone chapel.

    by cachaseiro Written Nov 1, 2008

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    The bone chapel is located by the sao fransico church and is a rather odd chapel where you have bones from more than 5000 dead human beings on display.
    The is suppose to show you how fragile life is, but it was made at a time where the church was moving the graves from the church (the portugese used to bury people underneath the church floor in the old days) to grave yeards outside the church, so they were kinda left with a lot of bones anyway and i think that was the reason why they got the idea for the chapel.
    It´s a rather facinating sight and there is even two mummified dead bodies hanging on the walls in the chapel.

    the bone chapel.
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  • rita_simoes's Profile Photo

    Capela dos Ossos

    by rita_simoes Updated Dec 22, 2007

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    This is a quite unique place, I've heard there's only another chapel like this one in Sedlec, Czech Republic (thanks for the information, globetrott!). It's not for the squeamish - it can be disgusting for some people.

    It is said that it was made with the bones of the thousands of people who died during a plague. In fact, there are hundreds and hundreds of bones! Particularly impressive are the two complete skeletons, who are said to be a father and his son.

    At the entrance, the sign that says «We, bones, await here for your bones» completes the creepy atmosphere ;-)

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