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Inside the Cathedral Almudena
In december 2011 I was lucky to meet the cardenal Rouco Varela and had a short conversation with him.
The Cathedral is not old; it was built during the XIX and XX centuries and consecrated in 1993 by the Pope Juan Pablo II during his visit to Madrid.
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It took a long time but it was all Worth it. It was consecrated by Pope Jean-Paul II during his fourth trip to Spain, on June 15, 1993. It is the first Spanish Cathedral consecrated by a Pope.
A must while in Madrid just next to the Royal Palace.
a bit of history
The capital belonged to the diocese of Toledo, whose Archbishop continually opposed the separation of the capital city of his diocese. At the end of the reign of Philippe II, the Spain is depopulated and impoverished strongly, and had therefore little more resources for such expenses.
It is only April 4, 1883 things rebondirent. King Alphonse XII laid this year there the first stone of a church at the current location of the future Cathedral of Madrid. In fact it was still that of the construction of a church made necessary following the destruction in 1868 that of Santa Maria, the oldest in Madrid. This construction should be on land donated in 1879 by the royal heritage, through the mediation of the Queen María Mercedes (1860-1878), devout of the Virgin of Almudena who died prematurely. These lands were located opposite the royal palace in the plaza de la Armería.
However he was in 1885, Pope Léon XIII decided by a Bull the establishment of a diocese in Madrid, thus putting an end to the opposition of the archbishops of Toledo. As the provisional seat of the new diocese, one chooses the Collegiate Church of San Isidro. But the need for a large new church was increasingly felt, especially as the city's population continued to increase.
The marquis of Cubas, responsible for the construction of the new Church project then reformed his initial draft of a parish church building, offering an imposing neo-Gothic Cathedral (following the dominant fashion in Europe under the influence of Viollet-le-Duc). The new project accepted, work began by the crypt, built in Romanesque style, with access on the side of the Cuesta de la Vega and which opened to the cult as in 1911, once completed by Enrique María Repullés. At this time the first pillars stood also.
But the work remained virtually abandoned until 1950. The character of the Church changed since then because, although now the Gothic style for the Interior of the work, the new proposal a neoclassical style for the entire exterior. This follows from the current aspect of the Cathedral. In this way, the new building would fit with ambient, also neoclassical royal palace architecture.
The work continued until their arrest in 1965, lack of funds and support from the municipality. And everything stopped for nearly twenty years. In 1984, created a group seeking support private and public institutions (Government and municipality, both left) to complete the work. The Cathedral was finally consecrated by Pope John Paul II on June 15, 1993, and took over the business of the Collegiate Church of San Isidro, who had served as interim Cathedral of Madrid since 1885.
In 2000 there were translated the remains of the pious Queen Maria-Mercedes.
a bit of description as best I can describe it , it is impossible. a huge beautiful building.
The Cathedral has a length of 104 meters by 76m at the level of the transept, is slightly smaller than that of Toledo (120 x 60 meters) but larger, for example, than that of Burgos (84 x 59). By comparison the Cathedral of Chartres in France is 130 metres by 46m.
The main vault dome of the Almudena reaches 32 meters in height, almost tripling the 12 meters of its axis to axis of the columns width. The most spectacular and impressive in the building is the beautiful dome built over the transept crossing, which the Lantern is surmounted by a cross that is more or less one hundred meters in height. It exceeds the highest Spanish cathedrals, Burgos, where the famous needles of the facade, but not equipped with cross, reach only 79 meters.
The dome is double, Gothic views from indoors, but clearly baroque from the outside. It is covered with stone and slate, and has an octagonal drum in which four large windows open and a small lantern on top.
The dome is decorated with twelve statues, representing the twelve apostles.
The two towers of the facade, the right is known as the Mariana or Gallegos (Galicians), given that the bells were donated by the Galicians. Each of them has a Marian name which earned him the name of Mariana. These are: Santa María la Real de la Almudena, Santa María de la Paloma, Santa María de Atocha and Santa Maria de Flor de Lis. The left tower which overlooks the Bailén Street, lies the chime.
complete measurements of its area are 4,800 m²
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Madrid's Cathedral is right next to the Royal Palace. It is a wonderful building and it is possible to take an excellent photo of it from so many different parts of Madrid. Entry is by optional donation for the upkeep of the building. The suggested amount is one euro. Inside the church had some wonderful frescoes and beautiful stained glass windows. Despite the many visitors to the cathedral, the building was very peaceful inside. Some chapels had been set aside for silent prayer and taking photographs was not allowed in these areas, though it was fine in the rest of the building. Outside the cathedral was a statue of Pope John Paul the second commemorating his visit to Spain.
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This famous cathedral of Madrid is located just next to Royal Palace. The two buildings have some harmony thanks to late construction of the cathedral. You can combine the visit to the cathedral as you visit Royal Palace.
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A first project for a cathedral in Madrid was drawn in 1623, but the construction really started in 1883, and is still unfinished (cloister finished in 1955 and façade in 1960). The cathedral was officially inaugurated in 1993 by Pope John Paul II.
Located in the center of the city
The Cathedral of La Almudena is located in a nice area and it has great views, specially during the summer where you can sit or stroll around and watch the amazing sunsets.
The style of this cathedral is mainly based in the Neo-Classical on the outside and of the Neo-Gothic on the inside. The exterior is marked by its sobriety which contrasted with the inside where there are notable sculpture such as "The Christ of the Good Death" by Juan de Mesa and several frescoes.
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Impressive Almudena Cathedral
VT certainly is an educational experience for me when it comes to travelling! There I was, wandering around admiring the beauty of Almudena Cathedral, but I kept thinking that there was something different about it. Sure enough, I only found out later (while building these tips) that this cathedral is practically brand new - with construction only finally being completed in 1999!
It is a long story, starting with the fact that powerful religious leaders in the larger city of Toledo (which had its own cathedral) blocked King Philip II in 1561 when, after making Madrid the new capital of Spain, he requested permission to build a cathedral there. Fortunately, the delay only lasted 307 years until the authorities in Toledo finally granted permission (in 1868) to build a 'church' honouring Madrid's female patron saint, the Virgin Almudena.
Construction got underway in 1883 but, because Madrid became a diocese one year later, it was then elevated to the status of a cathedral. The expense of the endeavor, combined with the disruption of the Spanish Civil War in the 1930s as well as World War II, dragged its construction out until it was finally completed only ten years ago. It may have taken a few centuries, but I was quite impressed by the final product!
We enjoyed its exterior murals as well as a short walk around its interior, taking in the architecture and several Christmas nativity scenes.
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Wow - what views! - Cathedral Dome
I am about as religious as my dog but I am really into Church architecture and music. Paintings and treasures I can take or leave. I had no intention of going to the Cathedral Museum until I realised that the ticket also gave access to the dome (cupula). The views from here over Madrid are breath-taking.
On your way out you pass through the Cathedral itself and the blend of traditional Baroque with very modern architecture is fascinating.
It´s Madrid´s cathedral which took more than 100 years to complete (it is finished in 1993). The cathedral is 104 m long and 76 m wide. The central dome has a diametar od 20 m. The interior of the Almudena Cathedral is more modern and much more modest than that of its larger counterpart in Toledo. The cathedral is near Royal Palace.
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Construction on the Almudena Cathedral (or Cathedral de Santa Maria la Real de la Alumund) only began in 1879. even though the concept of building a new cathedral for Madrid was raised during the 16th century. The completion however did not end until 1993 when the church was consecrated by Pope John Paul II. The church is dedicated to the Virgin of Aludena.
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The largest cathedral in Madrid.
The site where Almudena Cathedral is now standing, it was originally occupied by Madrid's first mosque. When Madrid became the capital city of Spain in the 16th century, King PhillipII wanted to build a grand church. His wishes did not come true till 1868. In 1883 construction of the new church based on Neo-Gothic design began and completed in 1993. The church was dedicated to the Virgin of Almudena.
Even though Almudena Cathedral historically and architecturally is not as famous as other Cathedral in Spain but it is the largest cathedral in Madrid.
Bus: 3, 39, or 148
Hours: Daily 10am-2pm and 5-9pm
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A neo-gothic style of architecture designed by the Marques of Cubas in 1879. It is located at the Calle Bailan alongside the the Palacio Real. It is the home of Madrid's Patroness, Our Lady of Almudena.
Its full name is Santa María la Real de La Almudena. Its construction began in 1879 by the architect Francisco de Cubas and was completed until 1993! when the cathedral was consecrated by Pope John Paul II (the cosntruction was abandoned until 1950, when Fernando Chueca Goitia adapted the plans of de Cubas to a neoclassical style exterior to match the grey and white facade of the Palacio Real, which stands directly opposite).
Here Felipe, Prince of Asturias married Letizia Ortiz on May 22, 2004 (what a lucky girl!).
The neo-gothic interior is uniquely modern, with chapels and statues of contemporary artists, from historical revivals to "pop-art" decor. The neo-romanesque crypt houses a 16th century image of the Virgen de la Almudena.
Enjoy the Interior Decorations
Historical cathedrals in Spain are the result of adding multiple works of art in different styles to a building which becomes almost a living entity, as it evolves constantly according to the changes in the society. That is also the case of the newer Almudena cathedral in Madrid.
The interior of the church hardly matches its external appearance. The original Neo-Gothic plans were carried out in the interior, resulting in a cold-ish and austere building that would be easily identified with a North European Lutheran cathedral rather than with the overwhelmingly decorated traditional Spanish cathedrals. The Almudena cathedral, however, is gradually getting a different appearance, with bright coloured ceilings and new decorations being added. The light filters through the alabaster of the dome windows and enhances the brightness of its colours.
Visit the Cathedral of our Lady of the Almudena
Unlike most of the Spanish historic cities, Madrid has not had a monumental cathedral until very recently. When philip II chose Madrid as the capital of the empire, it was such an insignificant town that it was not even a bishop's seat. The plans to build a cathedral in Madrid date back to this period, but were slowed by the powerful bishops of Toledo, from which the city of Madrid was dependant.
The creation of the diocese of Madrid was only achieved in the XIX century. It was then that the plans to build a cathedral opposite the royal palace took a new impetus under the sponsoring of King Alfons XII.
The original plans foresaw the construction of a Neo-Gothic church, following the fashion of the 19th century. Later on, it was decided that a classicist exterior would fit better into the environment. In particular, it would match better with the façade of the Royal Palace. Although many people see it as pastiche, it cannot be denied that it completes the monumental appearance of the Royal Palace in an admirable way.
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