2016 GW Spain Trip No.13: World Heritage Tour No.7 “Burgos Cathedral

Spain Basque journey 2016 GW
Spain Basque journey 2016 GW

Catedral de Burgos 20160430-_MG_5571

Date and Time of Visit: April 30, 2016 at approximately 10:00 a.m.

One of my favorite cathedrals in Europe.

Burgos, the main city on the pilgrimage route of Santiago de Compostela

This is my second visit to Santiago de Compostela since the pilgrimage route tour. I had a very good impression of this place, so I thought I would probably come back many times, but surprisingly it was an early revisit after four years.

The highway from Lerma became congested near Burgos. I think it was probably the morning rush.

Even though we were the first ones to arrive in the morning, it was still cold! It was a beautiful day when we left Lerma, where we stayed the night before, but it clouded up when we got to Burgos. I had been here 4 years ago in early May, and it was hot and I was wearing short sleeves, even though it was afternoon. What a difference that makes!

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Parking was in the public underground car park around the cathedral. It was an old type parking lot not very big.

A beautiful and ‘unique’ cathedral

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Wikipedia says “It is famous for its huge and unique architecture. The inside of Burgos Cathedral has a unique structure that I have never seen in any other cathedrals. The inside of this cathedral has a very unique structure that I’ve never seen in any other cathedrals. To be honest, I often feel that so-called Gothic cathedrals have the same structure no matter where I go, but this cathedral gives me a completely different impression.

From the outside, it looks like a multi-layered structure. It was built in 1221, but the construction was suspended for several hundred years, and it was not completed until 1567. During that time, the people who were in charge of the construction changed from French to German. These changes in time and the people who were in charge of construction are probably the reasons for the uniqueness of this cathedral.

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Not only the outside but also the inside is unique and interesting. To put it very roughly, there are many decorations, many different types of halls and staircases. For example, there are many layers of ceilings. If you look up from the cloister, you can see a single ceiling on a big and thick pillar, but here, the pillar itself is not huge and thick, but many small ones. The point is that the ceiling is low in some places considering the scale of the cathedral.

The shape of such a pipe organ seems to be seen from time to time, but I think it is a rare one.

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And the following staircase hall is not so common in other cathedrals, I think. It looks like a palace rather than a cathedral, doesn’t it?

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The only other cathedral where I felt such a unique feeling was Aachen in Germany. The scale (small) of this cathedral surprised me at first. The inside structure is also very different from other cathedrals. Even a layman can understand it at a glance.

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そして3年前の訪問時には特に木にはならなかったのですが、中央の聖堂にあるこの祭壇画(retable)、「ポブレー」でも「テルエル」でもありました。やはりスペインではポピュラーなのでしょうか。

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4年ぶり2回目の充実した訪問となりました。帰り際になって少し日が差すようになり少しずつ暖かくなってきているようです。この後は少々ロングドライブ、急遽予定を変更してバスク地方へと向かいます。(続く)

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