Turgalicia Turismo de Galicia

Xunta de Galicia

Cathedral of Santiago


Declared Historic-Artistic Monument in 1986.

  • Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela

    Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela

  • Obradoiro Facade

    Obradoiro Facade

  • Porta Santa

    Porta Santa

  • Acibechería Facade

    Acibechería Facade

  • Praterías Facade

    Praterías Facade

In the 9th century, Bishop Teodomiro of Iria Flavia identified a small Roman temple with the tomb of the Apostle St. James. As a result of this discovery, King Alfonso 2nd "The Chaste" ordered a modest church to be erected around this pagan construction. The increase in pilgrimages and a certain stability after Arab attacks led to a new construction, begun in the year 1075, during the reign of Alfonso 6th and under the direction of Archbishop Diego de Peláez. Work started on the Romanesque cathedral, continued during the period of Archbishop Diego Gelmírez, and did not stop until it became the large building we can see today.

The cathedral is built in granite masonry with roofs in slabs of the same material. Romanesque construction on a Latin cross ground plan, longitudinal arm and transept in three aisles, ambulatory in the sanctuary and a tribune that runs along the whole perimeter; side chapels arranged along the whole interior with their own individual space, from the Romanesque period only some parts of the ambulatory remain.

Side aisles with groined vaults, nave with stilted barrel vaults supported by vault arches with quarter barrel. The Acibechería facade is Neo-Classical (Ventura Rodríguez and Lois Monteagudo). The Praterías facade is Romanesque and a paradigm of medieval religious art. The Baroque Puerta Santa, (1611) is only opened on Holy Years. The Obradoiro facade (Fernando Casas y Novoa, 1738-1750) is a combination of stone and glass, with a remarkable large window in the central section, among the largest prior to the Industrial Revolution.

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