Igreja de São Vicente (Bragança)
Church in Bragança
The Church of São Vicente, whose construction dates back to the 13th century, is Romanesque in style. It has undergone several restorations, one in the 14th century and the last in the 17th century when it was completely rebuilt, due to a partial collapse of the church, maintaining the Romanesque structure, although with some aesthetic variations such as the addition of a new Renaissance-style portico. The interior decoration corresponds to the 17th and 18th centuries typical of the Baroque with a great abundance of polychrome elements, highlighting the main chapel with a crucified Christ between six Solomonic columns and under a starry vault in which gold and blue stand out. On both sides of the chapel there are two figures, one of the Virgin and the other of Saint Vincent. Legend has it that in this church Pedro I secretly married the Galician noblewoman Inés de Castro, contrary to what both the Court and her father King Alfonso IV wanted. Inés de Castro had been a lady-in-waiting to his previous wife, Constanza de Villena, who had died years before. King Alfonso IV ordered the assassination of Inés de Castro, which provoked a rebellion by his son and when he ended up ascending the throne, he ordered the execution of those involved in the murder of his beloved, tearing out their hearts. Years later, he ordered the construction of two magnificent tombs in the Alcobaça Monastery, where both are currently buried. On the façade, near the entrance portal, there is a panel of tiles that recreates the harangue that General Sepúlveda made to the inhabitants of Bragança so that they would rise up in arms against the Napoleonic army in 1808. This small church is usually open, and its visit is worth it for the magnificent baroque decoration inside.
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