Lisbon Cathedral (Sé de Lisboa) is an austere Romanesque building with some interesting treasures inside.
History of Lisbon Cathedral
According to legend, this site was home to a mosque that was converted to a cathedral after the city was conquered by Crusaders in 1147 (led by Portugal's first king, Alfonso Henríques). Although that was a common practice in Iberia, there is actually no evidence of any building on the site before King Alfonso. The cathedral was founded around 1150. Major earthquakes in 1344 and 1755 damaged the structure.
What to See at Lisbon Cathedral
With heavy walls and two battlemented belltowers, Lisbon Cathedral has a stern appearance - more like a medieval fortress than a place of worship. This reflects the outlook of Lisbon's new rulers, who knew they would have to hold the city against attempts by the Moors to retake it. The facade is primarily 12th-century Romanesque, with a central rose window and a large porch.
Inside, highlights include the font where St. Anthony of Padua is said to have been baptized in 1195, the 14th-century Gothic chapel of Bartholomeu Joanes, the 14th-century sarcophagus of Lopo Fernandes Pacheco, and a crib by Machado de Castro (an 18th-century Portuguese sculptor).
The medieval cloister, built in the 14th century by King Dinis I (1279–1325), includes a Romanesque wrought-iron grille and tombs with inscriptions. The sacristy contains the cathedral's treasury, with relics, icons, and religious art from the 15th and 16th centuries.
Quick Facts on Lisbon Cathedral
|Names:||Lisbon Cathedral · Sé de Lisboa|
|Visitor and Contact Information|
|Coordinates:||38.709851° N, 9.132766° W|
|Address:||Largo da Sé|
|Hours:||Cathedral: daily 10-7|
Cloister and sacristy: daily 10-1 and 2-6
|Lodging:||View hotels near Lisbon Cathedral|
- Sé de Lisboa - Frommer's Portugal, 20th ed. (accessed April 2009)
- Sé - Fodor's Portugal (accessed April 2009)
- Lisbon (Portugal) » History » The early period » The Age of Discovery - Encyclopedia Britannica Online (accessed April 2009)
Map of Lisbon Cathedral
Below is a location map and aerial view of Lisbon Cathedral. Using the buttons on the left (or the wheel on your mouse), you can zoom in for a closer look, or zoom out to get your bearings. To move around, click and drag the map with your mouse.