Santa Maria Azogue

Santa Maria Azogue
Santa Maria Azogue

The province of Zamora in Castilla y León is well known for its many Romanesque churches, in fact, the capital of Zamora is the city with the most Romanesque churches within its urban core, although in the province we also find important monuments of the same period as the well-known Collegiate Church of Toro or the Benaventana church of Santa María de Azogue that we analyze here.


The temple is one of the artistic references of the town of Zamora and of the Castilian and general Romanesque, although in reality, in its construction the transition from the Romanesque style to the Gothic tradition is noted. It seems that the temple dates from the time of the Christian repopulation when the Asturian monarchs began to gain territory to the south; Specifically, we would be talking about the time of the reign of Fernando II so the temple would be contemporary to another nearby church, that of San Juan del Mercado. However, and although the works began in the 12th century, the temple remained unfinished until the end of the 13th century when the monarch Sancho IV resumed the works.

We find ourselves before a church with a Latin cross plan with the body divided into three naves, of which the central one is wider and higher than the lateral ones. The development of the naves is carried out from four sections with thick buttresses until reaching the area of ​​the cruise or transept - this one marked on the ground plan - and which gives way to the head with fiveapses. From this same period are the ribbed and barrel vaults that we find in the transept area, as well as the tower that housed a famous clock of which only a misinterpretation remains since it was destroyed during a storm.

In the fifteenth century the Pimentels, Dukes of Benavente, subsidized the covering of the naves with and the construction of a sacristy that is still preserved today but that originally must have been a kind of pantheon.

Regarding the decoration of the facades, we must highlight the Agnus Dei theme on the south portal, the vegetal decoration of the north facade with schematic traces that follow the same style than the rest of the Romanesque buildings in the province and lastly, on the western façade, a decoration more in the classicist style that came to replace the original Romanesque style.

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