La Seu d'Urgell Cathedral

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La Seu d'Urgell Cathedral
Catedral de Santa María de Urgel
Seu urgell.jpg
Cathedral of la Seu d'Urgell
AffiliationRoman Catholic
LocationLa Seu d'Urgell, Spain
Bell tower of the Cathedral

The Cathedral of Santa Maria d'Urgell, called Cathedral of la Seu d'Urgell or Cathedral of Urgel, is a cathedral located in the city of la Seu d'Urgell, (Alt Urgell), seat of the Diocese of Urgell. The cathedral is the seat of the diocese and is dedicated to Saint Mary. The Cathedral of Urgell is considered unique within the Catalan Romanesque for the Italianate-style features on the ornaments of its facade.

The construction of the cathedral was begun in 1116 to designs by the master mason Ramon Llambard and is therefore one of the oldest cathedrals in Catalonia. The cathedral gives the name of the city. Originally referred to as the City of Urgell, it is now called "See of Urgell (La Seu d'Urgell), derived from the Latin Sedes Urgelli, meaning that the town is the episcopal see of the Bishop of Urgell).

The cathedral is dedicated to the Virgin Mary, patroness of the city, and has a 13th-century statue known as the Mother of God of Urgell (Mare de Déu d'Urgell) and also as the Virgin of Andorra.

The cathedral has had several restorations in the 20th century. The first was initiated by Josep Puig i Cadafalch in 1918. Between 1955 and 1974 the church was restored again. During these works, the unfinished parts of the cathedral were covered with stone. In addition, some of the added parts were removed to recover the external aspect of the original cathedral. Part of the facade was recovered and the interior was reformed, which had been somewhat disfigured by the plaster cover applied to it in the 18th century.

The 16th-century composer Joan Brudieu was maestro di capilla of the cathedral from 1548 to 1591.

Further reading[edit]

  • DDAA. Universidad de Oviedo. Arte e Identidades Culturales: Actas del XII congreso nacional del comité español de Historia del Arte (in Spanish), 1999. ISBN 978-84-8317-083-0.
  • Bassegoda Nonell, Joan. «El caso de la catedral de la Seu d'Urgell». In: Espacio, Tiempo y Forma: Historia del Arte t. 3. Proyectos barrocos para la Seu d'Urgell (in Spanish), 1990.
  • Carbonell, Eduard; Cirici, Alexandre. Edicions 62. Grans monuments romànics i gòtics, 1977. ISBN 84-297-1335-2
  • Carrero Santamaría, Eduardo. «La Seu d'Urgell, el último conjunto de iglesias. Liturgia, paisaje urbano y arquitectura». In: CSIC, Inst. Mila i Fontanals, U.E.I. de Estudios Medievales. Anuario de estudios medievales, 2010.
  • Junyent, Eduardo. L'Abadia de Montserrat. Catalunya romànica: l'arquitectura del segle XII, 1976. ISBN 84-7202-127-0.
  • Puig i Cadafalch, Josep. Institut d'Estudis Catalans. Escrits d'arquitectura, art i política, Xavier Barral i Altet, 2003 (Volum 62 de Memòries de la Secció Històrico-Arqueològica). ISBN 84-7283-717-3.

Coordinates: 42°21′28″N 1°27′42″E / 42.35778°N 1.46167°E / 42.35778; 1.46167