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The Basilica

 

The Montserrat basilica was built using the Renaissance and gothic stiles. The Catalonian architecture applied these two styles during the 16th century. The moment you enter, the first thing that you can see is the monks´ choir and the main altar. On the top part, you can see the throne with the image of Saint Mary. It has only one nave with communicated chapels and side platforms. It is not a church of big proportions, even though if we think of the time, the place where it was constructed and the available materials, it looks like at that time it was quite a building. The environment gives and ambiance of intimacy and meditation .

In order to venerate the image, you will have to exit the basilica and get back in through the right side entrance. The ritual gesture used to venerate the image is kissing or touching her right hand . This hand holds the ball that symbolizes the universe. When going down from the Virgin´s throne, you will see the “camarín” (small chamber) of the Virgin . This space was design by Master Francisco de Paula and assisted by the young architect Antonio Gaudí.

The organ deserves a special mention. Montserrat has always been a music reference in Catalonia. The organ that can be heard nowadays was recently inaugurated. It has 4,242 tubes, it is 41 ft tall, 18 ft wide and weights 26400 lbs.

 



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