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Ermita de Santa Barbara


Villafranca del Cid / Vilafranca

Vilafranca has two ermitas or small churches dedicated to ther martyred saint. The first is located at the site known as “Els bassis de Santa Bàrbara”, near “Barranc de la Fos” and “Pou de la Llàmia”. It was formerly dedicated to San Roque. When the present-day ermita to San Roque was built in 1704, the old church was left without a saint and so it was dedicated to Santa Bárbara.


But this did not last long, as its inhospitable location meant that few visits were made to the church. The parish priest, the Village Council and the parishioners therefore applied to the Bishop for permission to build a new ermita next to the historical road of the village leading to Nuestra Señora del Losar.

The current building was constructed between 1773 and 1794. This long construction period was due to the fact that it was financed completely with alms.

From an architectural perspective, it is a slender and perfectly proportioned building, with austere features and Neoclassical and Baroque elements. It has three naves separated by pilasters with Corinthian capitals that bear an ornamental dome.

The ermita preserves the original frescoes and paintings from the earlier construction: the front of the temple is occupied by a depiction of the martyrdom of the saint, the four pendentives that support the dome are decorated with frescoes of the four virgin Saints of old Christianity, Catalina, Apolonia, Quiteria and Casilda. The rest of the church is decorated with floral and geometric elements. They have all recently undergone a very successful restoration process.

 


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