The Chapels in the Transept

Are you in the transept now? Then I will tell you about the most interesting chapels in this part of the cathedral. After the Chapel of the Conception, you will come to the chapel of Sancti Spiritus, or the Holy Spirit. It dates from the 13th century and contains the tombs of seven members of the clergy, which shows how keen they were to be buried near the Apostle, to ensure their rapid and safe ascent to heaven.

Next, you will see a corridor with a staircase leading from it. At the end of the stairs is the Chapel of La Corticela. It is considered to be the oldest building in the city, as it existed in the 9th century. Attaching it to the Cathedral led to some harsh disagreements with the monks who owned it. It still retains its ancient character of a parish church. The Romanesque doorway is very interesting, and has a tympanum attributed to the workshop of Master Mateo, on which you can see the Adoration of the Magi.

Now go back to the transept. The great double door next to you is the back of the Azabacheria doorway. You will see the front when we go outside. Nearby there is a colourful statue of the apostle St. James as a warrior, with the attributes that earned him the name of The Moor Slayer. Decapitated heads abound, and there is a weapon that was originally only a reference to their beheading, but which in the Reconquista period was used to actually cut off peoples’ heads – those of the enemy. The Sarracen heads are usually hidden under bouquet of flowers, to avoid offending Muslim visitors.

The next few chapels are in the naves.

(c) (R) 2013, MUSMon com S.L.
Text (a) Diego Laforga Marcos

Source: Own work
Author: Diego Laforga (2013)