The church of Santa María la Blanca, in the San Bartolomé neighbourhood, is a precious jewel of Sevillian Baroque. It is known that a mosque was built in this same place during the Islamic period and some authors have pointed out that this mosque could have been built on top of a previous Christian church from the Visigothic period. The columns that today frame the small side doorway of the church on Calle Archeros come from this primitive Visigothic temple, although this possibility has not been archaeologically verified.

What is known with certainty is that the mosque was transformed into a synagogue after the Christian conquest of the city. By order of Alfonso X, a Jewish quarter was established in this area of the city, which approximately occupied the area of the current neighborhoods of Santa Cruz and San Bartolomé. In Santa María Blanca one of the three or four main synagogues of the Jewish quarter would be found.

For a long time it was thought that the current temple was completely built in the 17th century, without conserving anything from the previous building. However, various archaeological and restoration work on the building in recent decades have refuted this claim. Apparently, although the baroque reform of which we have spoken completely masked any decorative aspect of the primitive temple, the truth is that the floor plan of the current church and that of the synagogue on which it stands coincide in essentials. And apparently a good part of the walls and arches of the current church also correspond to the primitive work, although their aesthetics were intensely altered by the Baroque reform. This is how the architect Óscar Gil Delgado explains it in “A unveiled synagogue in Seville: architectural study” (2011):

“These prescriptions clearly imply that the walls of the naves of the church were not demolished and that, for this reason, the Mudejar blind arches are found today in the coronation of said walls. No new arches were turned over the new "red jasper" columns, the arches of the central nave were simply lowered, the old columns, which had no stylistic relationship with the new work, were removed and the new ones were placed. Surely the arches of the nave are the same as those of the "Mudejar" synagogue, trimmed, rounded and covered with plaster mouldings, according to the new taste”.

The synagogue would be transformed into a Christian church at the end of the 14th century, after the violent assault on the Jewish quarter in 1391. It would be at this time that the Gothic doorway would be added, which is still accessed today. However, the church that has come down to us responds mostly to the project for its remodeling promoted by Canon Justino de Neve. The works began in 1662 under the direction of Pedro Sánchez Falconete, who undertook the complete remodeling of which resulted in the baroque temple that we can see today.

It is a church with three naves divided by ten Tuscan columns that support semicircular arches. It is accessed through a tower entrance that opens at the foot of the central nave and has a rectangular floor plan. This is altered by a protruding front, in which the main altar is located, and by three side chapels: the baptismal one at the foot of the temple, the sacramental one on the epistle side, and that of San Juan Nepomuceno on the of the gospel of the head.

The main façade of the church is occupied on its first level by a Gothic portal, with the classic characteristics that this type presents in Sevillian churches: archivolts and diamond-tipped decoration. On this body, you can read the Latin inscription "HAC EST DOMUS DEI ET PORTA COELI 1741" (This is the House of God and the Gate of Heaven). The year 1741 refers to the date of certain minor reforms undertaken in the church, when the façade was also embellished and the inscription was added.

On this first level, in a second body, there are two long windows topped by semicircular arches. Above them is a classic belfry with two levels and behind openings for the bells.

The church has a much simpler front facing Archeros street. It is a simple semicircular arch supported by two stone columns with Late Antique capitals, clearly carried and probably used successively in the preceding mosque and synagogue.

Inside, what most attracts our attention is its intense decorative program, in which every last corner is covered with a combination of plasterwork, painting and sculpture, until configuring a space that as a whole appears as the clearest definition of the famous "horror vacui" of the baroque.

Justino de Neve entrusted the pictorial decoration to Murillo himself and the elaboration of the plasterwork to the brothers Pedro and Borja Roldán. The work begins shortly after the Pontifical Brief of Alexander VII of 1661 was promulgated, in which the devotion and cult of the Immaculate Conception was reaffirmed.

In this way, the iconographic program is as a whole an exaltation of the Eucharist and the Immaculate Virgin, as can be seen as soon as you enter the arch that supports the choir, where it reads Without original sin in the first moment of its being. . Murillo intervened with the realization of five canvases, of which only the oldest, "La Santa Cena", is preserved in the church. The others came to complete the iconographic program we have been talking about, with the "Immaculate Conception", "The Triumph of Faith" and two canvases that narrated the history of the foundation in Rome of the basilica of Santa María de las Nieves, a dedication to which is also dedicated to our church.

Today magnificent copies of the originals can be seen in situ, which unfortunately were the object of the savage looting suffered by the city with the arrival of Napoleonic troops in 1810. Among the stolen works were the four that he stole from Santa María la Blanca . Most of what was looted never returned to the city and is now scattered in museums around the world.

The main altarpiece of the church is Baroque and dates back to around 1690. Its main architectural element is two large Solomonic columns, so characteristic of the Sevillian altarpieces of the 17th century. In the central niche is the titular image of the temple, Nuestra Señora de las Nieves, a dress image made by Juan de Astorga at the beginning of the 19th century.

At the lateral ends, the eighteenth-century carvings of Saints Justa and Rufina, patron saints of the city, are located on corbels. In the center of the attic there is another niche that currently houses a rich golden cross, at the foot of which you can see a representation of the Giralda.

At the head of the right hand side we find a Baroque altarpiece from the mid-18th century presided over by the image of "San Pedro en la Cátedra". We see the saint with all the attributes that identify him as the first pontiff of the Church, framed by two child angels holding two of his attributes: the patriarchal cross of the popes and the keys of the Church.

On the wall on this same right side there is a neoclassical altarpiece from the 19th century, presided over by an imposing ensemble of the Trinity. It is the work of the Valencian-born sculptor Blas Molner. On the bench is an interesting small-format Pietà dating from the 18th century.

Also on the right is the sacramental chapel, presided over by an 18th century altarpiece that generally has an image of Saint Joseph from the 17th century in its central niche. On both sides and on a smaller scale, we find the images of Santa Ana and San Joaquin. The altarpiece bench houses a touching "Nativity Scene" made in terracotta, attributed to Cristóbal Ramos.

In the same chapel there is an altarpiece made up of pieces from a previous retable that had been readapted. It houses the images that originally belonged to the old brotherhood of the Sacred Lavatory, which disappeared in 1672 when it merged with the Sacramental of this church. In the center, the Cristo del Mandato, a work in pulp wood, made by Diego García de Santa Ana at the end of the 16th century. On both sides, Nuestra Señora del Pópulo and San Juan, both anonymous images from the 17th century.

In the center of the wall of the left nave (or of the Gospel) we find a valuable original altarpiece from the 16th century, although quite reformed in the 18th century. It frames a large canvas with the representation of "La Piedad", although it has also been identified at times as a "Descent". It is one of the most outstanding artistic pieces in the church, the last known work of Luis de Vargas, one of the most outstanding painters of the Renaissance in Seville. It is dated 1564 and the altarpiece is framed by paintings of San Juan Bautista and San Francisco, also works by Luis de Vargas. At the foot of the altarpiece you can see the tombstone of the family that financed it.

On the same wall is the only work by Murillo that has been preserved in the church: "La Santa Cena", dated 1650. It is possible that the French did not take it away because the truth is that the work is quite far from the traditional painter's style. Here Murillo uses a powerful chiaroscuro, which makes the canvas a tenebrist painting, with the light of the candles as the only illumination on the faces.

On the same wall we find another altarpiece with a modern Sacred Heart and at the bottom of this Gospel nave there is a small chapel behind a grill. In it there is a Baroque altarpiece from the 17th century, with a central image of San Juan Nepomuceno from the same period. On the walls of the chapel there is an interesting "Ecce Homo" from the 16th century, made by an anonymous follower of Luis de Morales. In front of him, an "Annunciation" by Domingo Martínez from the first third of the 18th century.


The church of San Buenaventura is a temple built in the 17th century as part of the former Colegio de San Buenaventura and is currently the church of the Franciscan Fraternity that is annexed on its west side.

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This article is an excerpt from the extensive description of the temple made for the website of the Brotherhood of Soledad de San Buenaventura.

It is documented that the works of the current temple began in 1622, following the project of the architect Diego López Bueno. However, the church would undergo numerous modifications throughout its history, especially during the tumultuous 19th century. As it has come down to us, it has a rectangular floor plan, with a large central nave and another nave, much less in height and width, on the epistle side.

The exterior is very simple, with hardly any decoration. The entrance is framed by a series of bands in hollow relief, probably initially conceived as a support for a stone doorway that was never built. On the cornice of the main façade there is a space with sloping ceilings, like a belfry, topped by a curved pediment.

The beautiful ceramic altarpiece of the Virgen de la Soledad located to the right of the entrance is practically the only decorative element on the outside of the temple. It was placed in 1952 and is a work of the painter, ceramicist and sculptor Enrique Orce Mármol, constituting one of the most beautiful examples within this art, standing out for its magnificent molding, sculpted by the same author.

Inside, we find a wide main nave, covered by a barrel vault with lunettes, reinforced by five semicircular arches. These rest on very marked cornices, which in turn sit on robust classical pilasters that run along the walls of this central nave. Between them, there is a series of semicircular arches that house five altars on the gospel side and that communicate with the smaller nave on the epistle side.

The area of the presbytery presents a slight widening as a transept and is covered by a hemispherical dome on pendentives, with 24 meters at its highest point and only visible from the inside. At the other end, over the entrance to the temple, stands a large and luminous high choir, supported by very wide lowered arches.

This nave has preserved its rich original decoration based on plasterwork and frescoes, devised by Francisco Herrera el Viejo. The set was carried out between 1626 and 1627, constituting one of the best examples of interior decoration of the Sevillian Baroque. The plasterwork was executed by master builders Juan Bernardo de Velasco and Juan de Segarra, who materialized Herrera's designs based on plant and geometric motifs, interspersed with cherub heads, cartouches, and garlands of flowers and fruit. These reliefs were partially enriched with traces of gold paint, which contribute to enriching and making the interior of the temple more attractive.

Herrera el Viejo himself executed the fresco paintings that, although badly deteriorated, have survived to this day. In the dome, around a central medallion with a relief representation of the Holy Spirit, he arranged the main saints of the Franciscan order: Saint Buenaventura, Saint Anthony of Padua, Saint John of Capistrano, Saint Louis of Tolosa, Saint Peter of Alcántara, San Jacobo de la Marca, San Bernardino de Siena and San Francisco de Asís himself. On the pendentives that support the dome, Herrera has four cartouches with the shields of the Mañara family, a family that exercised important patronage for the construction of the church.

In the center of each of the five sections into which the vault that covers the main nave is divided, we can see ovals with allegorical motifs that allude to the path to communion with God proposed by Saint Buenaventura in his philosophical work, based on a conjunction between knowledge and holiness.

On both sides of each of these symbolic motifs, there is a series of ten portraits of Franciscan theologians and philosophers, such as Alejandro de Sales or Juan Duns Escoto.

The original iconographic program was completed by a series of eight canvases, four by Herrera el Viejo and four by Zurbarán, alluding to the life of San Buenaventura and originally located on the side arches of this main nave. They were looted by the French during the Napoleonic invasion and today they are scattered throughout various museums around the world. The canvases that we can see today in its place are works by various authors, from the 18th and 19th centuries. In general, they represent scenes related to the Franciscan order and, like the frescoes, they are in a much better state of preservation.

The main altarpiece that presides over the church today is not the original, which was also destroyed during the French invasion. The one we can see today is a magnificent Baroque altarpiece from the last third of the 18th century, from the convent of San Francisco de Osuna. It was brought here in the middle of the 20th century and had to be adapted to its new location, smaller than the original, giving the whole a certain concave air.

It stands out for its predominance of curved lines and for the profusion of sculptures of angels and saints, which come to replace the columns as architectural elements to articulate the altarpiece. We see, for example, San Roque, San Pascual Bailón, San Miguel, as well as other saints linked to the order, such as San Buenaventura and San Francisco themselves.

In the center of the base there is a large silver demonstrator temple, framed by the figures of San Juan Nepomuceno and San Lorenzo. In the central niche, an image of the Immaculate Conception known as La Sevillana is venerated, a valuable work by Juan de Mesa from the now-defunct convent church of San Francisco in Seville. In the attic, we can see high reliefs with the Assumption and the Coronation of the Virgin.

As we have already mentioned, on the gospel side, between the pilasters and embedded in semicircular arches, there is a series of five altarpieces, made between the 19th and 20th centuries to replace those that occupied the original chapels, also destroyed during the French occupation.

The first of them, the closest to the High Altar, houses the titular image of the Brotherhood of Soledad de San Buenaventura, a work by Gabriel de Astorga from 1851. Behind it we can see the Holy Cross on Mount Calvario or Cruz de Caño Quebrado, a valuable forge work from the 17th century, around which the Brotherhood was founded in 1656.

The next altarpiece houses a dress image of the Virgen del Carmen, from the 18th century, popularly known as "de la Batata". Originally, this image was worshiped in a small chapel that has now disappeared near the Postigo del Aceite. Apparently, the brotherhood that was in charge of his cult was so humble that to obtain income they auctioned sweet potatoes and other products from the field. That would be the origin of the curious name of this image.

Also from the 18th century are the magnificent high relief of the Coronation of the Virgin and the Immaculate Conception that occupy two of the remaining altars. Both works are of extraordinary quality, especially the Immaculate Conception, which occupied the central niche of the main altarpiece until it was replaced by "la Sevillana". It is a precious image that some authors have located in the circle of the sculptor Cayetano de Acosta, although due to its physiognomy the Italian origin seems more likely than other accounts.

As for the small nave on the epistle side, it shows architectural characteristics that are clearly differentiated from the rest of the temple and is covered by greatly reduced groin vaults. Its current appearance corresponds to the reforms undertaken in the church at the end of the 19th century, coinciding with the construction of the current headquarters of the Franciscan Fraternity of San Buenaventura.

Traditionally it has been affirmed that the church originally had three naves and that the one on the gospel side is currently missing, since it disappeared due to the reforms carried out during the 19th century to create the current Bilbao street.

This was stated by Antonio Martínez Ripoll in his work "La Iglesia del Colegio de San Buenaventura" (1976) and since then it has been collected in various publications, including the "Artistic Guide of Seville and its Province", published by the Diputación.

However, a careful analysis of the temple from the formal point of view, combined with the documentary testimonies that we have from the 17th century, allows us to affirm that the original church had a single large nave with side chapels, a very frequent appearance. in conventual churches during the Baroque.

It would already be at the end of the 19th century, when the Franciscan community returned to take over the temple, when the small nave on the epistle side that has survived to this day would be built.

In it is located, in the first section next to the entrance, the Holy Christ of Salvation, co-owner of the Brotherhood of Soledad de San Buenaventura. It is an image by Manuel Cerquera Becerra from 1935 that clearly draws on the tradition and style of the crucified masters of the Sevillian Baroque.

At the other end of the nave, at the head of the temple, is the current sacramental chapel. It has two neoclassical altarpieces dating from the 19th century, to which María José del Castillo attributes a possible authorship by José Fernández. In the center, a Virgin of Guadalupe is venerated, made by Juan Abascal Fuentes in 1960, a replica of the patron saint of Extremadura and head of her own brotherhood, also based in this church. It is flanked by an anonymous image of San José from the 18th century and a San Francisco from the 17th century, which Matilde Fernández Rojas identifies as coming from the now-defunct convent church of San Francisco, where he would receive worship at one of the side altars that were located at the base. of the main arch that framed the presbytery.

The side altarpiece of this chapel is presided over by a beautiful Baroque carving of the Virgen del Patrocinio, dating from the 17th century and also from the now-defunct convent of San Francisco.


This small church was built at the initiative of the city's carpenters' union, and hence its dedication to Saint Joseph, patron saint of woodworkers. It is known that the carpenters already had a temple in this area in the 16th century, but its dilapidated state meant that it had to be demolished. The current temple was built in two phases during the 18th century.

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The first of these was directed by Pedro Romero and concluded in 1717 with the construction of the only nave of the chapel. The second was completed in 1766 under the direction of Esteban Paredes, completing the main chapel and the exterior of the temple. The church reached the 20th century in a state of practical ruin and in 1931 suffered a fire in which it lost the roof and part of its wall paintings. Fortunately, she was able to be rehabilitated and returned to the cult.

As we said, it is a small church, with a single nave and transept slightly marked in plan. It has two exterior doors, one at the foot and another on the Gospel side.

The main doorway is made of brick with a showy Baroque style that manages to convey the sensation of monumentality despite its small dimensions. Two pilasters support a divided curved pediment, in the center of which opens a niche with the image of San José, designed by Lucas Valdés in 1716. On both sides, two richly framed medallions with the busts of San Fernando and San Hermenegildo, and on the central niche, a third medallion with a representation of San Juan Bautista in youth.

On both sides of the door, two niches housed the images of San Joaquin and another saint, identified as San Jason or San Teodoro de Amasea. To avoid damage, both are currently kept in the sacristy of the church, being replaced by two images made in resin by the contemporary sculptor Jesús Curquejo Murillo. One of them is a copy of the previous San Joaquín, while the other is a tender representation of Santa Ana with the girl Virgin.

The side doorway can be dated to the same period as the main one and its central element is a beautiful relief that represents the Betrothal of the Virgin and Saint Joseph, attributed to the great eighteenth-century sculptor Cristóbal Ramos. On the molding that frames this scene, four high-quality images gracefully rest despite their profound deterioration. On the first level, Saint Peter (today headless) and Saint Paul, and on the main scene, two allegorical figures representing virtues attributed to Saint Joseph: Meekness, holding a lamb, and Chastity.

Inside, the only nave of the temple is covered with a barrel vault resting on transverse arches, and an elliptical dome with a blind lantern rises over the transept. The profuse sculptural and pictorial decoration of the temple make the Chapel of San José an exquisite little jewel of Sevillian Baroque.

The main altarpiece was designed by the Portuguese-born sculptor Cayetano de Acosta, one of the most outstanding artistic figures of the 18th century in the city. On the bank, the main body is divided into three streets by means of stipes, although the profuse decoration that covers practically every centimeter makes it difficult to distinguish this structure. In the central niche is located the head of the temple, San José, in a sculpture of the circle of Pedro Roldán. In the stipes that frame this niche are the figures of San Joaquín and Santa Ana, parents of the Virgin, attributed to Pedro Duque Cornejo, another of the great sculptors of the 18th century in Seville.

On the Tabernacle, there is an image of the Immaculate Conception, and on both sides, in the side streets of the altarpiece, we find San Juan Bautista and San Juan Evangelista, under two medallions with high reliefs of San Sebastián and San Roque.

In the upper part of the altarpiece, a series of children and young angels complete the composition, and in the center of the attic is the image of God the Father in an attitude of blessing.

On both sides of the transept there are two altarpieces, with the same chronology as the main one and also with profuse decoration. The one on the right gives access to the sacristy and the one on the left is presided over by a sculptural group with the Coronation of the Virgin.

On the sides of the nave, framed under semicircular arches, there are two other altarpieces. Both have been dated to the 18th century. The one on the right has in its center a beautiful set with The Betrothal of the Virgin on an interesting and classic architectural background, while the one on the left is presided over by an image of Santa Ana.

The paintings that decorate the vaults and arches have been dated to the last third of the 18th century, a century to which the various canvases on the canvas walls also belong. As an exception, we find a beautiful painting from the 17th century that represents Rest on the flight to Egypt. It is by an anonymous author who seems to follow in style the work of the Italian Paolo Veronese.


The Hospital of Nuestra Señora de la Paz is a welfare foundation belonging to the Order of Hospitaller Brothers of San Juan de Dios, settled in Seville since 1543 and in the location they currently occupy since 1574. It was founded as a center for the care of sick with few resources and later began to also deal with convalescent former soldiers. With the Confiscation, the Hospital was expropriated in 1836 but the hospital brothers returned to their old home in 1880. Since then, the order has continued to be in charge of the Hospital, which currently functions as a nursing home.

The most artistically interesting part, and the only one open to the general public, is the church of Nuestra Señora de la Paz, which overlooks the Plaza del Salvador. It is a temple originally built in the first half of the 17th century, although deeply reformed during the 18th century.

It is a church with three naves, with a transept not marked in plan and a flat head.

On the outside, its only façade at the foot has a design that has originally been attributed to the late-Renaissance architect Vedmondo Resta. It is divided into three levels

In the first, four Doric columns support a frieze of metopes and triglyphs. Between the lateral ones there are two oculi and between the central ones, the lowered semicircular arch that gives access to the temple.

In the center of the second level, four columns again, but this time surrounded by profuse decoration with plant motifs, rockeries and child angels, elements probably added in the 18th century. They frame three niches that house the images of San Agustín, the Virgin with the Child and San Juan de Dios. The side niches are profusely decorated, while the central one is extremely simple. In addition, the stylistic features of the central image of the Virgin are clearly different from those of the lateral images, which indicates that this central space was reformulated after the rest of the cover. The whole set is framed by two pilasters, also with abundant ornamentation.

On the third level, the doorway is completed with a niche framing a modern stained glass window, flanked by abundant and meticulous sculptural decoration. Above the stained glass window, two angels hold a crown over the symbol of the brothers of San Juan de Dios, a pomegranate, which recalls the founding of this order in the Andalusian city of the same name in 1572.

Above the whole, a curved and divided pediment rises in the center of which an oculus opens. On both sides of the façade, we find two bell towers topped by stylized spiers covered in tile.

Inside, we find the three naves of the church divided by semicircular arches on marble columns, with the central one notably higher than the lateral ones. The side naves are covered with barrel vaults, like the central one, which also includes lunettes. At the foot of the temple, there is a high choir decorated with abundant rococo-style plasterwork decoration. Above the transept, there is a dome with a lantern, decorated with plasterwork with geometric motifs, original from the 17th century.

The tile base that runs along the walls of the temple is especially interesting for its originality in Seville. It has been dated back to 1771 and has a beautiful 'candelieri' decoration in blue and white, with some yellow motifs in prominent areas.

The main altarpiece is neoclassical in style and dates from around 1800, when it replaced a previous one in the Baroque style. In the central niche, a dressed image of the Virgin of Peace, head of the temple, is venerated, flanked by San Juan de Dios and San Juan Grande, all sculptures from the same period as the altarpiece.

Two of the most artistically interesting images in the temple are located in the headers of both side naves. These are the representations of San Rafael and San Juan de Dios, both attributed for their great quality to the great Martínez Montañés.

On the walls of the church there is a series of eight Baroque altarpieces, dating from the 17th and 18th centuries, which house an interesting set of sculptures. Among the religious images, we could highlight the following for their interest:

- An image of San Andrés from the 17th century attributed to Francisco de Ocampo, from the previous main altarpiece of the church, now disappeared.

- San Carlos Borromeo, carved by Juan de Mesa in 1618.

- An image of the Cristo de la Humildad, dated around 1600, which reproduces the iconography of Christ grieving in the moments before the Crucifixion. This representation has its origin in an engraving by Dürer and is widespread in Sevillian churches.

- An Immaculate Conception by the Valencian sculptor Blas Molner, from the late 18th or early 19th centuries. Due to its great dynamism and originality, it could also be identified as an Assumption of the Virgin.


The Church of the Divine Savior of Seville is the second largest temple in the city, only after the Cathedral. It is one of the great architectural jewels of the city and inside it houses a magnificent sculpture collection, with works by the most prominent authors of the Sevillian Baroque.

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We know that in the space it occupies today was the so-called Ibn Adabbas Mosque, created around 830 as the main or aljama mosque of the city. It held this rank until the new great mosque was built in the 12th century, in the place now occupied by the Cathedral.

Some elements of the mosque that was located in El Salvador have been preserved, such as part of its patio and the start of its minaret, which corresponds to the lower part of the tower that we find at the north end, on Córdoba street.

Once the city was conquered by the Christians in 1248, the mosque was used as a church, although maintaining the essentials of its structure. It remained like this for centuries, with the architectural characteristics of an Islamic temple but serving for Christian worship, as is still the case today, for example, with the Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba.

However, already in the 17th century, it seems that its state was quite dilapidated and it was decided to build a new temple. The works began around 1674, but when the closure of the vaults was underway, there was a resounding collapse that forced a good part of the project to be reconsidered.

The direction of the works ended up being entrusted to Leonardo de Figueroa, the best architect of the Sevillian Baroque, who also took part in other projects such as San Luis de los Franceses or La Magdalena. In this case, Figueroa was in charge of closing the vaults, building the great dome and finishing the interior of the building. The works were not completed until 1712.

The result is a huge and majestic temple with three naves. The transept stands out notably in height from the rest, although it is not perceptible in the plan of the building, which is what is called a living room.

The main façade has very classic baroque lines, close to Renaissance forms. The succession of stone pilasters and reddish brick panels achieve the classic bichrome that is so characteristic of many Sevillian buildings since the Lonja, today the Archivo de Indias, was built in the 16th century. Despite its monumentality, the El Salvador façade stands out for its sparse decoration, which contrasts sharply with the interior. The decoration with a Plateresque air that covers the pilasters and some of the moldings is relatively recent, from the end of the 19th century.

But in addition to its architecture, the Church of El Salvador, which was Collegiate until 1852, stands out for the magnificent art collection that it treasures. It has some of the most outstanding works of Sevillian altarpieces, beginning with the main altarpiece, dedicated to the Ascension of the Lord. It is a work directed by Cayetano de Acosta around 1779, who conceived an exuberant altarpiece, with a baroque profusion close to rococo.

Also magnificent is the altarpiece of the Virgen de las Aguas, on the right side of the transept, a work by José Maestre from 1731 presided over by this Marian image of the so-called “fernandinas”, dated around the 13th century but much remodeled later. These are just two examples of the large collection of altarpieces that this church houses.

And it is that the representation in the temple of great masters of sculpture is exceptional. In all probability, the two great figures of the Sevillian baroque are Juan Martínez Montañés and his disciple Juan de Mesa.

From the first, El Salvador preserves a colossal sculpture of San Cristóbal, reminiscent of Michelangelo due to its monumentality and beauty. But the most outstanding work of this author in El Salvador is surely Nuestro Padre Jesús de la Pasión, a moving image of the Lord with the cross on his back, which marvelously shows the classicism of the Montañés baroque, managing to convey all the feeling and the emotion of the moment, but in a contained, elegant and solemn way. It presides over the silver altarpiece of the Sacramental Chapel and goes out in procession every Holy Thursday. We do not exaggerate when saying that it is one of the most accomplished representations of Jesus Nazareno in the Spanish Baroque.

From the other great master of the Sevillian baroque, Juan de Mesa, we find the Cristo del Amor, who also takes a procession from this temple during Holy Week, this time on Palm Sunday. It is an exceptional size of the crucified, already dead, with a masterful treatment of the anatomy, hair and cloth. An exceptional work within the production of its author, who seems to have taken into account for its realization the model that his teacher Montañés made a few years before with the Cristo de la Clemencia that we found in the Cathedral.

Along with these teachers, the list of great artists with works in this church of El Salvador is almost innumerable. We could cite, for example, Duque Cornejo, José Montes de Oca or Antonio Quirós. But for now we end here this small sketch about the authentic living museum of the Sevillian baroque that is the old collegiate school of El Salvador. We will tell more in future deliveries.


The Archbishop's Palace of Seville stands on the land that has occupied the bishop's residence since the Christian conquest of the city in the 13th century. However, nothing has survived from the primitive palace to the present day and the oldest preserved remains date from the 16th century.

Elements of the chapel are preserved from the first half of this century, such as the wooden roof and the tile frieze, as well as a gallery with marble columns dating from around 1530.

However, it can be considered that the configuration of the palace as it has come down to us corresponds to the reconstruction undertaken under the direction of Vedmondo Resta between the end of the 16th century and the 17th century. It was then that the distribution of the different rooms and rooms around two main patios was configured.

The magnificent Baroque doorway that faces the Plaza Virgen de los Reyes was carved by Lorenzo Fernández de Iglesias around 1704. It stands out for its great dynamism and decorative richness, constituting one of the best examples of this style in Seville.

In the main courtyard there is a fountain presided over by a sculpture representing 'Hercules with the Nemean Lion'. In the same courtyard, a beautiful Baroque doorway dating from 1666 gives access to the Archbishop's Archive, which houses valuable documentary collections.

From an artistic point of view, the most interesting rooms are located on the top floor around the second patio. They are accessed by a monumental staircase, with a single shot and three sections, which is crowned by a dome with the shield of Archbishop Antonio Paino. The pictorial decoration of the staircase was carried out by Juan de Espinal, with the exception of the paintings of the pendentives and the semicircular areas, which were already made in the 20th century.

The main hall of the palace is covered with a ceiling divided into sixty squares with a series of paintings from the Old Testament interspersed with emblems and shields. They were made at the beginning of the 17th century by two authors who have not been identified. As a whole, they make up a moralizing message about the values and virtues that prelates should possess.

In addition to the paintings on the ceiling, the living room exhibits a very interesting collection of paintings by various authors. We find, for example, an apostolate attributed to Sebastián Llanos Valdés, a series of sixteen Biblical-themed paintings by Juan de Zamora and another ten on the Passion of Christ by Juan de Espinal. To these must be added a series of paintings of saints from Zurbarán's workshop, a work by Murillo representing 'The Virgin delivering the Rosary to Saint Dominic' and a 'Slayed Saint John the Baptist' by Mattia Pretti.

Also of great value are the works of the so-called Gallery of the Prelate, presided over by one of the oldest works in the Palace, an Immaculate Conception from the end of the 16th century by Cristóbal Gómez. Next to it, a series of paintings from Venetian workshops and copies by various Italian authors dating from around 1600 are exhibited. They represent allegories of the elements and the seasons, as well as episodes from the story of Noah.

The collection of portraits of Sevillian archbishops also deserves mention for its historical value, with the representation of more than seventy archbishops from the 17th century to the present.

In other smaller rooms there is a large collection of Sevillian painting, with works by authors such as Herrera el Viejo, Juan de Espinal, Francisco Pacheco or Murillo. They are interspersed with works by various foreign authors, such as the Dutch Abraham Willaert or Carel Van Savoy, who produced a series on the life of David.

The main chapel of the palace is presided over by a main altarpiece from the 18th century made by the great sculptor of Portuguese origin, Cayetano de Acosta. It is presided over by a beautiful image of the Immaculate Conception made by the same author, who also carried out the four side altarpieces of the chapel, dedicated to Saint Peter, Saint Paul, Saint John the Baptist and Saint John the Evangelist.

In addition to the main chapel, the palace has an oratory designed by Pedro Sánchez Falconete in the mid-17th century. In it, the vault stands out above all, decorated with plasterwork attributed to Pedro de Borja.


The church of the Tabernacle was attached to the Cathedral between 1618 and 1662, following the plans of the architects Miguel de Zumárraga, Alonso de Vandelvira and Cristóbal de Rojas. It is an imposing Baroque temple with a single nave with side chapels, on which stands are placed between buttresses. In them are a series of eight colossal stone sculptures of evangelists and doctors of the church, made by José de Arce. It has a wide transept that is not noticeable from the outside, covered by a large dome with a lantern. The rest of the nave is covered with vaults, so characteristic of the Baroque.

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On the outside, the façade is divided into three floors decorated with attached pilasters in the three classical orders: Doric on the first floor, Ionic on the second and Corinthian on the third. The decoration, apart from these pilasters, is practically non-existent, with the exception of the parapet that finishes off the entire building, on which a series of striking flamers are arranged. It has three main entrances, one from the Patio de los Naranjos, another from the Cathedral at the foot and another from Avenida de la Constitución, on the Evangelio side, which is generally used to access the church. The latter has a very simple classical portal, with two pairs of Tuscan columns supporting a pediment. In its center is the coat of arms of the Cathedral Chapter, with the Giralda between vases of lilies. On it, the allegories of Faith and Charity appear reclining.

Also very classical but more monumental is the doorway through which one enters from the cathedral. It was designed by Pedro Sánchez Falconete and in its central niche we see San Fernando, framed by Saints Justa and Rufina and the brother bishops San Isidoro and San Leandro.

Inside, the sculptural decoration of the vaults was carried out around 1655 by the brothers Miguel and Pedro de Borja, who also made the relief with the Allegory of Faith that is located above the entrance of the feet.

The main altarpiece comes from the Vizcaínos Chapel of the now-defunct Casa Grande de San Francisco Convent, which was located in the current Plaza Nueva. The structure was made by Dionisio de Ribas and the sculptures by Pedro Roldán, who got one of his masterpieces here. In the center, there is the scene of the Descent, with the body of Jesus already resting on his Mother's lap. On both sides, there are two beautiful young angels, full of dynamism, and in the attic a Veronica shows her cloth with the Holy Face, also accompanied by angels. The set is finished off with a representation of San Clemente, who is the official owner of the temple. This image of San Clemente comes from the original altarpiece that preceded the current one. Apparently it was a spectacular set made at the beginning of the 18th century. With the expansion of neoclassicist taste in the 19th century and a certain phobia of what was considered excessive ornamentation, it was decided to destroy it in 1824. The current altarpiece would be located in this location in 1840.

On both sides of the transept there are two large reddish marble altarpieces made in the mid-18th century. The one on the left side is presided over by a Christ on the Cross from the beginning of the 17th century, made by the sculptor of the Madrid school Manuel Pereira. La Dolorosa at its feet is the work of the brilliant 18th century sculptor Cayetano de Acosta, who also made the sculptures that decorate the altarpiece on the other side of the transept. In this case, we see in the central niche a beautiful Virgin with Child.

As for the side chapels, from the presbytery towards the feet and on the Gospel side, we find the following:

- Chapel of Cristo de la Corona, with a neoclassical altarpiece from the 18th century, presided over by a Nazarene dedicated to Cristo de la Corona. It is an emotional image from the 16th century that is the owner of his own Brotherhood, taking a procession on Friday of Sorrows through the surroundings of the parish.

- Chapel of San Millán, with an 18th century altarpiece, in which, in addition to San Millán, Santa Catalina, the Immaculate Conception, San Roque and Santa Gertrudis appear.

- Chapel of Saint Joseph. It has an altarpiece from the late 17th century, presided over by an image of San José by Pedro Roldán or his circle.

- Chapel of Saints Justa and Rufina, with an 18th century altarpiece presided over by an image of the Sacred Heart from 1948, flanked by images of the Saints, from the same period as the altarpiece.

Also from the presbytery to the feet, but on the Epistle side, we find:

- Chapel of the Virgen del Rosario, presided over by an image made by Manuel Pereira at the beginning of the 17th century, although re-polychromed in the 18th century.

- Chapel of San Antonio, with an altarpiece dated 1667 and made by Bernardo Simón de Pineda, one of the most outstanding altarpiece artists of the Sevillian Baroque. On the altar is an ivory Crucified from the 17th century from the Philippines.

- Chapel of the Immaculate. In it there is a beautiful image of the Immaculate Conception, anonymous from the beginning of the 18th century. The chapel is also the seat of the Sacramental Brotherhood and in it we find the magnificent baby Jesus made by Martínez Montañés around 1606. This sculpture would set the pattern for the most widespread representation of the Baby Jesus during the Baroque. There are innumerable representations that have taken place in the city since the 17th century and that today are spread throughout the city's churches, convents and private collections, all of them having as their starting point this masterful work by Martínez Montañés for the Tabernacle. The image parades every year in the Corpus Christi procession that leaves from the Cathedral.

- Chapel of Santa Bárbara, with a Baroque altarpiece from around 1680 presided over by the head of the chapel, flanked by Santa Teresa and Santa Elena.
In the upper part of the walls there is a good collection of baroque canvases, among which the nine made by Matías de Arteaga around 1690 stand out. The painter was a member of the Sacramental Brotherhood and the paintings represent themes from the Old Testament related in a way symbolic with the Eucharist, such as 'The parable of the wedding guests' or 'The adoration of the Mystic Lamb'.


The Royal Court was the highest judicial institution in the city and settled in this space since the beginning of the 16th century, when it moved from its previous headquarters in the Casa de Pilatos. The current building would be built in the Renaissance style at the end of the same century by order of Felipe II.

However, the building that we can see today is far from the original, due to the numerous historical vicissitudes it has gone through.

In 1918 there was a great fire that destroyed it to a large extent and forced the transfer of the courts to Almirante Apocada street, to the place where the General Archive of Andalusia is located today.

After the fire, Aníbal González was in charge of remodeling the property, giving it its current appearance. In the 1970s it underwent another important transformation with the aim of making it the headquarters of the old Caja de San Fernando. Today it houses the headquarters of the CajaSol Foundation.