Church of St. Jerome the Royal, Madrid, Spain

The Church of St. Jerome the Royal, is a parish church, belonging to the parish of St. Jerome, with a baroque cloister. It was one of the most important monasteries of Madrid. Originally there was a convent but now there is only the church and a cloister. It was closely linked to the royal family and the church and convent have witnessed many events, being the marriage of King Juan Carlos I, the last royal event that has been celebrated there. At the time of Felipe IV the monastery had its best splendor. They began the complete restoration of the church in the early twenty-first century. Inside, there is a large picture , ‘Last Communion of St. Jerome’, which is the work of Rafael Tejeo; we can find paintings that were given by the Prado Museum, the Gothic altarpiece of Jose Mendez among other important works. During the restoration, the wall paintings of the sixteenth century and badly damaged sculptures have appeared in one of the chapels.

Tips

The restoration of the exterior of the church is over but there is still work inside.
To visit the church, you can visit their website to seethe opening hours and the hours of service.

 

Temple of the Sun, Cuzco, Peru

The Temple of the Sun or Coricancha (surrounded in gold in quechua), was the most sacred place of the Empire of the Incas. It’s from Coricancha that the system of Ceques shone, consisting of forty-one imaginary lines, along which there were three – hundred – twenty – eight huacas (buildings), positioned on one side and other of theTahuantinsuyu (the name that the incas gave to their empire, meaning ‘the land of the four quarters’). This particular organization allowed a total control of the empire from Cuzco. It’s exactly at Cuzco that we find substantial remains of this building which was the scene of important ceremonies of the Inca : marriages, sacred, funerals. It is there that their mummies were preserved, sitting on golden thrones. Its great walls of stone, in Inca’s style, measuring 140 m long and 135 m wide; were richly decorated. Spanish chroniclers have abundantly described its fabulous treasures, until they have melted or disappeared; the edge of the temple, the walls painted in blue, was adorned with a huge gold cornice, altars, doors, statues, were decorated with plates of gold and silver, sometimes inlaid with precious stones reflecting the light of the dayduring the day and at night with the torches. The sactuaire door was adorned with gold and silver patterns. Above the altar, there was a large gold disc representing the sun; for its strategic position, the rays of the rising sun beat on it and did it shine. At he arrival of the Spaniards, the golden plates covering the walls were torn and the mummies of the ancient Incas desecrated. The only things that remained standing were the foundations that, shortly after, served as basis for the construction of the Church and the convent of Santo Domingo.

Tips

Cuzco is located at 3,400 metres of altitude so consider that during the night it’s cold but in the day, especially from April to October, there’a lot of sunshine so you should be careful not to get ill cause of the hot temperatures. Sunglasses and solar protector are suitable.