What to visit? Santuário de Nossa Senhora da Nazaré
The current Santuário da Nossa Senhora da Nazaré dates from the late seventeenth century. However, the first temple on the site have been built in 1377 by order of King Fernando. In the early seventeenth century, several improvement works were carried out, but the weak results were obliged to the need for complete reconstruction of the building, which took place from 1680 to 1691. Over the centuries XVII and XIX, the temple would continue to be improved.
The building plan is a Latin cross, with a single nave and four side altars. Worth highlighting the tiles depicting the life of Joseph in Egypt, authored by Dutch painter Van der Kloet, dated 1709. The gilded altarpiece is of national style, dating from the late seventeenth century.
The Santuário da Nossa Senhora da Nazaré was an important center of Catholic pilgrimage, especially in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The printed and iconographic disclosure of the story of the miracle of Don Fuas Roupinho was the responsibility of Cistercian Frade Bernardo de Brito, who from 1600's, contributed to the dissemination of the legend of Nossa Senhora da Nazaré.
The Círios - individual and collective pilgrimages, that came especially from Portugal center communities like Mafra and Ericeira - made Sítio da Nazaré a site of the sacred and the profane: many came to pay a promise or seek the forgiveness of sins, but also many people came here to party and play. The traditional festivals of Nossa Senhora da Nazaré celebrates the miracle of Don Fuas Roupinho, and it takes place every year in September - 8th of this month is a municipal holiday.
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