un recorrido por el arte mudéjar aragonés
webmaster: José Antonio Tolosa (Zaragoza -España-)

CHURCH OF SAN PEDRO (TERUEL)



The complex comprising the Church of San Pedro in Teruel is made up of a among the most interesting series of architectonic elements that are found within Aragonese Mudéjar: one of the four bell-tower gates of the city, the church itself with its church-fortress construction, and one of the few cloisters in this style that remain in Aragon. We must add to all of this the Mausoleum of the Lovers, situated in one of its chapels and the destination par excellence for tourists to the city. Beginning with this page, I offer a tour of all its parts, except for the cloister for which I don’t have photographs at the moment, though I hope to provide them shortly.

TORRE E IGLESIA DE SAN PEDRO y MAUSOLEO DE LOS AMANTES

The tower is the lowest in height of the four medieval ones built in the city. In spite of the lack of documentation concerning its construction, its archaic traits situate it as the oldest, or at least at the same time as the Cathedral’s in its chronology. Like the latter, it is possible that it constituted the bell-tower of the earlier Romanesque church, which it replaced; we have notices of its existence in 1196, but nothing remains of it after the building of the present Mudéjar church in the 14th century. Unlike the others, its shape is pronouncedly rectangular instead of square. It does share with them its function as a tower-gate, with a passage through it at the bottom. It is divided into two stories, and abuts the church on its east side.

2 TORRE 3 TORRE 4 TORRE

The tower rests on two rectangular buttresses, one of them practically disappearing into the church wall, and the other, formed as a talus on its exterior, has now been freed of its adjacent buildings when the latter were demolished. The jambs of the passage under the tower are covered with stone up to the level of the springing of the vaulting, demarcated by a classicistic course. This suggests a later intervention, surely because of the decomposition of the brick through capillary humidity rising from the ground.

The passage is covered with pointed vaulting with its outer edges having a double-ringed frame. The vault’s intrados is plastered. The first story continues above the course up to a simple cornice formed by two projecting brackets that divides it from the upper level. This lowest story is slightly wider at the bottom than at the top.

5 CUERPO INFERIOR DE LA TORRE 6 PASO BAJO LA TORRE

The first-level decoration is made up of a frieze of angled brick and another of blind arches on each of its sides. The frieze of angled brick is 70 centimeters in height, and on the north and south faces it has ceramic colonettes made up of two parts between each brick row. In total there are 17 courses of angled brick and 18 ceramic colonettes on each frieze.

BANDA DE ESQUINILLA Y FUSTES CERÁMICOS

On the tower’s western face, being wider, the frieze of courses of angled brick extends to 22. Here there are no colonettes between them, because they were not replaced during restoration, but it is supposed that they originally existed.

BANDA DE ESQUINILLAS

Between this frieze and the separating cornice between stories there is a second one of blind arches, 2.20 m. in height. These brick arches are supported by freestanding stone columns, bases, and capitals.

ARQUERIA

Over these columns are overlapping semicircular arches supported by alternating columns. The crossing of these arches produce pointed arches between the contiguous columns. There are eight columns on each side except on the west, where there are ten.

ARCOS DE MEDIO PUNTO ENTRECRUZADOS

 

 
Interactive map of the Region of Teruel
 
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