Cartuja de Miraflores

Pje. Fuentes Blancas, Km 3.5, Burgos

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The Carthusian Monastery of Santa María de Miraflores is a monastery of the Carthusian Order, built on a hill known as Miraflores, located about three kilometres from the centre of the city of Burgos.

It is a jewel of late Gothic art. The most outstanding feature of the complex is the church, whose western façade, in Elizabethan Gothic style, is decorated with the coats of arms of its founders. The church has a single nave, side chapels and a polygonal apse. The nave is covered with a star-shaped vault.

King John II of Castile donated the palace and fortress of Miraflores, built in 1401 by his father, Henry III of Castile, to the Carthusian Order. It was a hunting lodge located on the outskirts of the city of Burgos. In this way, John II fulfilled the testamentary will of Henry III.

The Carthusian monastery of Miraflores was founded in 1442. After some reluctance on the part of the friars, because it was too cold and lacked water, the community was established and the building was placed under the patronage of San Francisco (Carthusian monastery of San Francisco de Miraflores). The monks, who came from other Spanish Carthusian monasteries, settled in the palace-castle. But this first monastery did not last long, as it was destroyed by fire in 1454.

In 1453 it was decided to build the present building. Between 1454 and 1488 work was carried out on the new monastery, which was now placed under the patronage of Santa María de la Anunciación (de Miraflores). The work was commissioned to Juan de Colonia, who was working on the cathedral of Burgos at the time, and began in 1454. That year Henry IV succeeded his father, John II, and the works came to a virtual standstill.

It was in 1477 when they were promoted by Queen Isabella the Catholic. During her reign, the High Altarpiece and the tomb of John II of Castile and Isabella of Portugal, located in the presbytery, were completed. The Carthusian church is above all a royal pantheon, occupied by Isabella's family.

When Juan de Colonia died, Garci Fernández de Matienzo continued the architectural work. He died of the plague in 1478 and was succeeded by Simón de Colonia, son of Juan de Colonia. The work to cover the church was completed around 1484.

Between 1532 and 1539, other architectural work was undertaken in the monastery under the direction of Diego de Mendieta, to create the side chapels (left side only) and give the church greater height. Spires and pinnacles were also added, and Gothic cresting was installed.

Article obtained from Wikipedia article Wikipedia in his version of 14/09/2020, by various authors under the license Licencia de Documentación Libre GNU.