Este es un viaje que nos llevará por distintos templos románicos de Ribeira Sacra que tiene en común su proximidad al camino de Santiago que los peregrinos utilizaban en invierno.
La obra de mayor relevancia en Galicia del románico es la catedral de Santiago, pero hoy nos ocuparemos de los pequeños templos y monasterios rurales que también tuvieron un papel de suma importancia.
Monforte fue, en época medieval, un singular ejemplo de ciudad- fortaleza feudal, alrededor de un monasterio, con un castillo situado sobre un estratégico montículo (El Monte de San Vicente) y rodeado por un recinto amurallado salpicado de torres defensivas. A los pies del monte, el río Cabe, que daba vida al asentamiento. Del perímetro de la muralla, datada entre los siglos XIII al XV, todavía se conservan amplios tramos, dos torres y tres puertas de acceso a la villa. Del castillo sobresale la Torre del Homenaje, bien conservada y restaurada en su interior, desde su cima se divisa el valle de Lemos surcado por el curso fluvial del Cabe. La vista y el atractivo que tienen los castillos, hacen de esta, una parada obligada.
The monastery of the Bernardine Nuns first belonged to the Benedictine order and then later became Cistercian. It has always been reserved for women and is the only monastery in Galicia that has maintained its function from its creation to the present day. The monastery was built in several stages. The Romanesque church dates back to the 12th century. The cloister was built in the 15th century, whilst the rest was built in the 18th century.
The monastery is surrounded by a solid wall and above the entry door there is the coat of arms of the Castilian Cistercian Order. The main building is of two stories and is made of granite and houses the tomb of Countess Fronilde, Abbess of the monastery in the 12th century.
The church is of rectangular design, with a single nave and a semicircular apse and appears to be the work of a single teacher or workshop. It is highly decorated in parts with a series of crude but ingenious carvings in which in which human figures are mixed with animal bodies in grotesque positions. Since the above elements do not fit a Cistercian mentality, their implementation has to be before 1175, when it passed to that order.
Also in the church are the tombs of Diego de Lemos, leader of the Irmandiñas revolt and his son.
The Irmandinas revolt was a movement that developed in Galicia during the 15th century. Formed of farm workers and some nobles it opposed the feudal regime and for a while was very successful, destroying a number of castles.
Visiting hours: Daily from 11:00 to 13:00 and 16:00 to 18:00 hours.
Coordenadas GPS: 42°30'30.34"N - 7°37'11.79"O
SeThis church is a slender, elegant and compact at the same time. Reminiscent of the pre-Romanesque Asturian style it belonged to a small Benedictine monastery founded early in the 12th century by a noble called Excladia Ordoñez.
There remains evidence of an earlier building but of the former monastery there remains only the church which dates to the second half of the 12th century. The size and appearance of the church bell suggests a defensive function to the building. This church is one of the most original Romanesque buildings in Galicia.
Coordenadas GPS: 42°31'5.71"N - 7°38'54.32"O
church was built between the 11th and 12th centuries, as the church of a convent of Benedictine nuns. In the seventeenth century some reforms were carried out and the Torrenovais Chapel, which houses the tomb of Don Rodrigo de Quiroga López, was added. But for many centuries, during the times of the Visigoth, this site housed a monastery.
The church is of a rectangular design with a single nave. The altar pieces are from the 18th and 19th centuries. There is also the figure of Don Rodrigo López of Quiroga at prayer.
Don Rodrigo López was one of the most important people in the house of Espasante. He enlisted to fight in the war in Italy and was decorated for his valour. His expert use of military tactics led him to be promoted rapidly through the ranks until finally he became Commanding General of all the troops in Italy. On July 10, 1619 he was knighted and later made commander of Anguera in Brazil. He died in Lodi in Italy.
Coordenadas GPS: 42°31'13.85"N - 7°39'29.10"O
Todo parece indicar que aquí existió un centro religioso suevo, aunque no sería hasta los siglos XII-XIII cuando se construyó esta iglesia románica, como parte de un monasterio que hoy ya no existe. En épocas posteriores se llevaron a cabo diversas obras de reforma. La iglesia cuenta con una sola nave, con cubierta a dos aguas. El ábside, rectangular, está cerrado por una bóveda de cañón. En diversos puntos de sus muros se pueden distinguir inscripciones y marcas, presumiblemente realizadas por los canteros que trabajaron en su construcción. Otro elemento de interés es la decoración del alero. También prestaremos atención a las tres ventanas de primitiva estética que encontraremos en el arco de acceso al ábside (una) y en los muros de la rectoral (las otras dos).
Coordenadas GPS: 42°30'1.66"N - 7°42'11.28"O
This place deserves a special mention because of the beauty of the setting.
As is the case with other churches in the area this was once part of a monastery which existed back in the 10th century. However there are very little traces left today of the monastery. This church was built between the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, although has suffered from various reforms over the years. Unlike the others, this is a basilica with three naves and three semi-circular apses. The main entrance is set between two buttresses. There are six arches decorated with human heads and geometric shapes.
The church has Renaissance and Baroque altarpieces, as well as the remains of ancient 15th century murals.
Coordenadas GPS: 42°26'52.83"N - 7°42'8.73"O