Internacional

CLÉRIGOS

The Clérigos’ area is currently one of the main attraction centers of the Porto’s city, mostly thanks to the cultural stream that gushes out of the Miguel Bombarda Galleries and that was one of the affirmative movement's motors of the Porto's Liveliness - of which we will more minutely speak in another guide. In this Clérigos' itinerary we must necessarily start at the beginning: by the Clérigos Church and Tower, a Baroque's splendor, the city's ex-libris and the Nicolau Nasoni's greatest work in the 18th century's Porto. It's the monument that identifies the city and with which the Porto's inhabitants identify themselves.

Nearby, on the Candeireiros Street, stays the Nossa Senhora da Silva Chapel, of the 15th century. The façade has an 18th century's oratory with the images of Nossa Senhora da Silva, S. João Baptista and S. Baldomero. Next to the Tower, the Passeio dos Clérigos, which has rehabilitated the Lisboa's Square and which has now a beautiful garden with 50 olive trees.

In the opposite direction, you will find the Cordoaria Square and the Cadeia da Relação grand building that houses, since 1997, the Portuguese Photography Center. Next, in Campo Mártires da Pátria, stands the S. José das Taipas Church, built in neoclassical style, between 1795 and 1878, in a project of the engineer Carlos Cruz Amarante. The chapel and its contents exist from 1666. The Church has, throughout the body, the frame of the Barges' Bridge's (Ponte das Barcas) tragedy, of 1845, and also the oldest Porto's crib, of the 18th century. It also has a German School's ancient painting, of appreciable value, representing the Virgin Mary of Divine Providence (Nossa Senhora da Divina Providência). There is, in the Church, a museum and catacombs.

Just behind, on the S. Bento da Vitória Street, stands the magnificent and sumptuous São Bento da Vitória Church, inaugurated in 1707. The interior is lined with wood and gilded woodcarving, and the pews of the high choir are one of the most representatives of Portugal. The organ, inaugurated in 2001, after careful restoration, is one of the most emblematic of the country.

Further beneath, on S. Bento da Vitória Street, is the baroque Nossa Senhora da Vitória Church. Completed in 1539, it was rebuilt in the 18th century, after a devastating fire. In the interior, it has excellent woodworks and, in the limelight, the main altar's painting, of the painter João Glama Stroberle, and the image of the sculptor António Soares dos Reis, both allusive to the Nossa Senhora da Vitória. For the sculpture, Soares dos Reis had used his mother as a model, but the image's humanity displeased to whom commissioned it, who replaced it with a smaller work. However, it was saved by the Priest Agostinho Jardim and it can be seen today, by means of permission.

Nearby, you can go through the beautiful Rua das Flores, object of a major urban intervention, which has given it back to the city with the honors that it deserves. You can visit, soon in the beginning of the street, the Misericórdia Church, one of the most beautiful churches of Porto and of the Country, completed in 1559 and restored in 1740, by a Nicolau Nasoni's project.

Returning to the Passeio dos Clérigos, we can visit, on the Carmelitas Street, the Lello Bookshop, considered one of the most beautiful bookshops of the world and one of the must-see spots of the city. Beside we have the Gomes Teixeira and the Parada Leitão Squares, which involve the Porto's University with their esplanades' animation. Separated from the squares, by the Carmo Street, stay the Carmo and the Carmelitas Churches. This last one with a classical façade, attributed to Nicolau Nasoni, and the first, of the 18th century’s second half, one of the most notable examples of the Porto's rococo style. The street ends at the majestic neoclassical building of St. António Hospital.

If you decide to go there before lunch or dinner, make sure you take a Port Wine's glass as an appetizer. If you prefer to go after, have a digestive Port Wine, because you are in the city's heart of this precious nectar. This guide has reached the end. You can already start another, the Art’s Guide, for example, seeing that you're in the right place.

 

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