Monuments of Salamanca (VI)

San Marcos Church

This Romanesque building dating from the 12th century was converted into a royal chapel in the 14th century. Judging from its solid fortress-like look (slit windows, circular shape) and its location close to the gate of the city walls, it must have engaged a defensive role. The frescos inside are 14th century Gothic style, whilst the bellcote is Baroque.

St. James church

This church preserves a XIIth century Romanesque-Mudejar style apse. The St. James church enjoyed a certain degree of importance on the pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela from southern Spain.

Church of the Holy Spirit (Sancti Spiritus)

This is a Plateresque gem combining Gothic and Renaissance elements, and once inside, reveals a single nave covered by ribbed vaulting and a high altar retable in the Baroque style.

Church of Santo Tomas Cantuariense

This was the first Romanesque church dedicated to St. Thomas Becket, Archbishop of Canterbury. With a Latin-cross ground plan it takes the form of single nave and three apses.

Convento de las Dueñas

Next to San Esteban Convent, the much simpler Convento de las Duenas consists of a double-decker cloister with a small museum of religious art. The nuns sell sweets inside daily except Sundays. The convent was founded by Juana Rodríguez Maldonado in 1419 and was in fact built on the site of her own mansion, of which some Mudejar vestiges still remain. The building was designed by Juan de Álava and Rodrigo Gil de Hontañón. The two-storey cloister encloses an irregular pentagonal courtyard. On the lower level, graceful segmental arches are supported by columns.

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