Seville: an historical and descriptive account of "the pearl of Andalusia"

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S E V I L L E {ii} 



Spanish Arms and Armour
The Escorial
The Prado
In Preparation
Granada and Alhambra
Royal Palaces of Spain
Leon, Burgos and Salamanca
Valladolid, Oviedo, Segovia,
    Zamora, Avila & Zaragoza







There is a charm and compelling fascination about Seville which produces in the traveller visiting the city for the first time a sensation of physical ecstasy. The spell of the Pearl of Andalusia is instant and enduring; I have not met a man or woman proof against its witchery. George Borrow shed tears of rapture as he beheld Seville from the Cristina Promenade, and “listened to the thrush and the nightingale piping forth their melodious songs in the woods, and inhaled the breeze laden with the perfume of its thousand orange gardens.” The Moors left their beloved capital at the height of its prosperity, in the full flower of its beauty; change has not affected its material importance, and time has not staled its infinite variety. A Christian Cathedral now stands on the foundation of the great mosque of Abu Yakub Yusuf; but the Moorish Giralda, the most expressive monument of the Mohammedan occupation, still beckons the distant traveller onwards to the promised land; the Alcazar breathes the spirit of its Oriental masters; and the shim{vi}mering Torre del Oro still reflects the light of the setting sun upon the broad bosom of the rose-coloured river.

The history of Seville from the time of its subjugation by Musa is a volume of romance; its pages are illumined by the cold light of flashing steel and stained with the blood of tyrants, traitors, and innocent men; but it forms a chronicle which the reader will follow with absorbing interest. The more exacting student will satisfy his thirst for knowledge in Dr Dozy’s “History of the Mohammedans of Spain,” in Gayangos’ translation of El Makkari’s “History of the Mohammedan Dynasties in Spain,” in Coppee’s “History of the Conquest of Spain,” and Pedro de Madrazo’s “Sevilla”—to refer to only a few of the many learned works that have been published on the subject. Many will continue to be content with the few pages of Notes which appear in the various Spanish Guides; but a certain section, it is hoped, of the English travelling public, will find in this book an album, a handbook, and a history which will supply a long-felt want.

In my attempt to produce a volume which will appeal both to the artist and the tourist, to the archæologist as well as the least imaginative sightseer, I have reproduced a number of illustrations{vii} which may incline some persons to accuse me of a superabundant regard for detail. It is true that many pages are devoted to intricacies of decoration which the general reader may find of small interest, but my object in multiplying this detail is to satisfy the requirements of those who would fathom the mystery of Moslem art. When I was first in Granada I inquired for pictures of the minutiæ of many choice examples of design, and, failing to obtain anything of the kind, I had to employ a local artist to make sketches of the detail of the mosaics. That experience determined me, in treating of these Mohammedan cities of Spain, to include those reproductions for which I had searched in vain, and to make my illustrations, as far as possible, the last word on the subject of Arabian architecture and ornament.

For the historical portion of the letterpress I have laid under tribute the authorities already mentioned, and I have also to acknowledge the assistance received in the compilation from Mr E. B. d’Auvergne.

A large number of the photographs included here were supplied by Messrs Rafael Garzon and Senan & Gonzalez of Granada, Hauser & Menet of Madrid, Ernst Wasmuth of Berlin, publisher of Uhde’s “Baudenkmaeler in Spanien und Portugal,”{viii} and Eugen Twietmayer of Leipzig, publisher of Junghandel’s “Die Baukunst Spaniens,” and my thanks are due to them for the courteous permission to reproduce their work in this volume.

Some of the illustrations are reproductions of pictures which were at one time in the San Telmo Collection. As that collection has been distributed I have been unable to trace the originals, but as they were so closely identified with Seville I make no apology for including them.

A. F. C.

Swiss Cottage,






General view of Seville from the Giralda Tower, West side of the City. First view 1
General view of Seville from the Giralda Tower, West side of the City. Second view 2
General view of Seville from the Giralda Tower, East side 3
General view of Seville from the Giralda Tower, Central part of the City 4
General view of Seville from the Giralda Tower, North side 5
Procession of the Conception of the Virgin passing through the Plaza de San Francisco 6
View of Seville 7
View of Seville 8
View of Seville 9
View of Seville 10
View of Seville 11
View of Seville 12
View of Seville 13
View of Seville 14
Bridge over the Guadalquivir 15
Hercules Avenue 16
The Plaza Nueva 17
View of Triana from the Tower of Gold 18
View of Seville from Triana 19
View of Seville from Triana 20
The Tower of Gold from San Telmo 21
A street in Seville 22
The Tower of Gold 23{xii}
Church of San Marcos, from the Palace of the Dueñas 24
Church of San Marcos 25
Court of the Hotel de Madrid 26
Hospital, with the Mosaics painted by Murillo 27
Portal of the Convent of Santa Paula 28
Church of Santa Catalina 29
Church of Todos Santos 30
The Provincial Museum, with Murillo’s statue 31
Statue of Murillo 32
General view of the Town Hall 33
The Town Hall, left side 34
The Town Hall, left side, detail of the interior angle 35
Door of the Town Hall 36
The Town Hall, detail of the principal part 37
General view of the Town Hall 38
The Town Hall, detail of the façade 39
The Town Hall, detail of the principal door 40
Window in the Town Hall 41
Principal facade of the Tobacco Factory 42
The Tobacco Factory 43
Cigar makers, Seville 44
The “Sevillanas” Dance 45
Sevillian Costumes—A Courtyard 46
General view of the Exchange 47
Court in the Exchange 48
The Aceite Postern and ancient ramparts 49
The Roman walls near the gate of the Macarena 50
The Roman Amphitheatre of Italica 51
General view of the Palace of San Telmo from the River 52
Principal Portal of the San Telmo Palace 53
Interior of the Hall of Columns in the San Telmo Palace 54
Interior view of the Duke of Montpensier’s study in San Telmo 55
Various objects found in the sepulchres at San Telmo.
(In the Palace of San Telmo)
Palms in the Gardens of San Telmo 57
The sepulchres of the victims of Don Juan Tenorio in the Gardens of San Telmo 58{xiii}
The Roman Sepulchres in the Gardens of San Telmo 59
View in the Gardens of San Telmo 60
The Aviary in the Gardens of San Telmo 61
The River in the Gardens of San Telmo 62
The Cocoa Tree and east side of San Telmo 63
The Zapote, a tree in the Gardens of San Telmo 64
The Island and River in the Gardens of San Telmo 65
The Yucca, a rare tree in the Gardens of San Telmo 66
General view of the Hospital de la Sangre 67
Church of the Sagrario, north side 68
Principal façade of the Hospital de la Sangre 69
Porch of the Church of the Hospital de la Sangre 70
Bas-relief, Hospital de la Sangre, the work of Torregiano 71
General view of the exterior of the Cathedral 72
The Giralda, from the Patio de los Naranjos 73
The top of the Giralda 74
The Dancing Choir-boys, Seville Cathedral 75
Dancing-boys, Seville Cathedral 76
The Gate of the Archbishop 77
Plaza de San Francisco, with the Giralda and Cathedral 78
Plaza del Triunfo, the Cathedral, and the Exchange, from the Gate of the Lion 79
The Fête 80
Gate of San Miguel in the Cathedral 81
Gate of the Cathedral called de las Campanillas 82
Gate of the Baptist in the Cathedral 83
The Gate of the Lizard in the Cathedral 84
General view of the Cathedral from the Tribune of the principal door 85
Principal Sacristy in the Cathedral 86
Principal Entrance to the Cathedral 87
Interior view of the Principal Sacristy in the Cathedral 88
The Gamba Chapel 89
The Cathedral, the Gamba Chapel, and entrance to that of the Antigua 90
Chapels of the Conception and the Annunciation in the Cathedral 91{xiv}
The Cathedral. The Chapel of the Conception 92
The Cathedral. Detail of the High Altar 93
The Cathedral. Retablo, or altar-piece of the High Altar 94
Iron railings of the lateral part of the High Altar 95
The Cathedral. Wrought-iron screen in the Choir 96
The Cathedral. Wrought-iron screen of the High Altar 97
St Christopher carrying the Child Jesus, by Mateo Perez Alesio, in the Cathedral 98
San Fernando Square 99
Gardens of the Alcazar 100
General view of the Gardens of the Alcazar 101
View of the Gardens of the Alcazar 102
General view of the Gardens of the Alcazar 103
The Gardens of the Alcazar. Lake and Gallery of Don Pedro I., the Cruel 104
The Gardens of the Alcazar. View of the Gallery of Don Pedro I., the Cruel 105
The Hothouses in the Gardens of the Alcazar 106
Calle de las Vedras in the Gardens of the Alcazar 107
The Gardens of the Alcazar. Parterre of Doña Maria de Padilla 108
The Alcazar. Baths of Doña Maria de Padilla 109
Magnificent altar in faience, painted in the fifteenth century. (In the Oratory of the Catholic Sovereigns in the Alcazar.) 110
Town Hall of Seville. Details of doors and balconies 111
Town Hall of Seville. Details 112
Parish Church of San Marcos 113
Various Towers of Seville 114
Details of the Mosaic commonly called El Grande 115
Sculpture and details of ancient churches 116
Architectural parts, bas-reliefs, and ceramic objects 117
Façade of the Consistorial houses 118
Entrance to the Alcazar, Seville 119
Principal Façade of the Alcazar 120
Gate of the principal entrance, Alcazar 121
Interior of the Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar 122
Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar 123
Interior of the Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar 124{xv}
Interior of the Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar 125
Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar 126
Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar 127
Hall of Ambassadors. Alcazar 128
Upper part of the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 129
Court of the Dolls from the Room of the Prince, Alcazar 130
Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 131
Angle in the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 132
Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 133
Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 134
Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 135
Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 136
Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 137
Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 138
Gallery on the second storey of the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 139
Upper part of the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 140
Upper part of the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar 141
Entrance to the Dormitory of the Moorish Kings, Alcazar 142
Dormitory of the Moorish Kings, Alcazar 143
Front of the sleeping-saloon of the Moorish Kings, Alcazar 144
Sleeping-saloon of the Moorish Kings, Alcazar 145
Intercolumniation, where Don Fadrique was assassinated, Alcazar 146
Sultana’s Quarters, Alcazar 146
Room in which King St Ferdinand died, Alcazar 147
Interior of the Hall of St Ferdinand, Alcazar 148
Front of the Hall of St Ferdinand, Alcazar 149
Gate of the Hall of St Ferdinand, Alcazar 150
Gallery of the Hall of St Ferdinand, Alcazar 151
Throne of Justice, Alcazar 152
Court of the Hundred Virgins, Alcazar 153
Court of the Virgins, Alcazar 154
General view of the Court of the Hundred Virgins, Alcazar 155
Court of the Virgins, Alcazar 156
Front of the Dormitory of the Moorish Kings and the Court of the Virgins, Alcazar 157{xvi}
Gallery in the Court of the Virgins, Alcazar 158
The Court of the Virgins, Capital of the door of the Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar 159
The Alcazar. Court of the Virgins. Capital of the gate of the Hall of Charles V. 160
Palace of the Dueñas, Door of the Chapel 161
Palace of the Dukes of Alcalá, commonly called Casa de Pilatos 162
The Court in the House of Pilate 163
Court of the House of Pilate 164
Gallery in the Court of the House of Pilate 165
House of Pilate 166
Gallery in the Court of the House of Pilate 167
Angle and statue in the House of Pilate 168
House of Pilate. Entrance to the ante-room of the Chapel 169
The staircase in the House of Pilate, by Barrera 170
House of Pilate. Entrance door of the Oratory 171
House of Pilate. Way out to the flat roofs in the High Gallery 172
Staircase in the House of Pilate 173
House of Pilate. Doors of the officers in the High Gallery 174
House of Pilate. Window of the Prætor’s Hall leading to the Garden 175
House of Pilate. Barred window in the Prætor’s Garden 176
House of Pilate. Bolt on the Prætor’s Gate 177
House of Pilate. Window in the Ante-room of the Chapel 178
House of Pilate. Section of the ceiling in the Prætor’s Hall 179
Palace of the Dueñas in Seville 180
House of Pilate. Mosaics in the Hall of the Fountain 181
Palace of the Dueñas in Seville. Glazed tiles in the socles of the Chapel and arches 182
Mosaic of the Peristyle in the Palace 183
House of Pilate. Mosaic in the Hall of the Fountain 184
Mosaic in the Court of the House of Pilate 185{xvii}
Mosaic in the Court of the House of Pilate 186
Mosaic in the Court of the House of Pilate 187
House of Pilate. Mosaic in the Chapel 188
Bartolomé Esteban Murillo. Born in Seville, 1617 189
Altar-screen of the La Gamba, by Luis de Vargas. Seville Cathedral 190
“Descent from the Cross,” by Pedro Campaña, Seville Cathedral 191
“St Anthony of Padua visited by the Infant Saviour while kneeling at his prayers,” by Murillo. Seville Cathedral 192
“Our Lord baptized by St John Baptist,” by Murillo. Seville Cathedral 193
“The Guardian Angel,” by Murillo. Seville Cathedral 194
“St Leander,” by Murillo. Seville Cathedral 195
“St Isidore,” by Murillo. Seville Cathedral 196
“St Ferdinand, crowned and robed,” by Murillo. Seville Cathedral 197
“Madre Francisca Dorotea Villalda,” by Murillo. Seville Cathedral 198
“St Anthony with the Infant Saviour,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 199
“Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 200
“Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 201
“Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 202
“Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 203
“St Justa and St Rufina, Patron Saints of Seville, holding between them the Giralda Tower,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 204
“St Bonaventure and St Leander,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 205
“St Thomas of Villanueva, giving alms at the door of his Cathedral,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 206
“The Annunciation of Our Lady,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 207{xviii}
“St Felix of Cantalisi, restoring to Our Lady the Infant Saviour, whom she had placed in his arms,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 208
“Adoration of the Shepherds of Bethlehem,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 209
“St Peter Nolasco kneeling before Our Lady of Mercy,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 210
“The Deposition,—St Francis of Assisi supporting the body of Our Lord nailed by the left hand to the Cross,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 211
“St Joseph and the Infant Saviour,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 212
“St John the Baptist in the Desert leaning against a rock,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 213
“St Augustine and the Flaming Heart,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 214
“St Felix of Cantalisi and the Infant Jesus,” known as “San Felix de las Arrugas,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 215
“St Anthony with the Infant Saviour,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 216
“Deposition from the Cross,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 217
“Our Lady with the Infant Saviour in her Arms,” by Murillo. (An early picture.) Seville Museum 218
“Our Lady and the Infant Saviour,” known as “La Virgen de la Servilleta,” by Murillo. Seville Museum 219
“Our Lady seated, with the Infant Saviour in her lap,” by Murillo. (An early picture.) Seville Museum 220
“St Thomas of Aquin,” by Zurbarán. Seville Museum 221
“The Virgin of the Grotto,” by Zurbarán. Seville Museum 222
“St Bruno talking to the Pope,” by Zurbarán. Seville Museum 223
“The Day of Judgment,” by Martin de Vos. Seville Museum 224{xix}
“Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception,” by J. Valdes Leal. Seville Museum 225
“Jesus crowning St Joseph,” by Zurbarán. Seville Museum 226
“The Devout Punyon,” by Zurbarán. Seville Museum 227
“Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception,” the Virgin surrounded by Cherubim, by Fr. Pacheco. Seville Museum 228
“Our Lord’s Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes,” by Murillo. Seville Hospital 229
“Moses striking the Rock in Horeb,” by Murillo. La Caridad, Seville 230
“St John of God, sinking under the weight of a sick man, assisted by an Angel,” by Murillo. La Caridad, Seville 231
“The Death of St Hermenigild” by J. de las Roelas. Hospital de la Sangre, Seville 232
“The Apostleship,” by Juan de las Roelas. Hospital de la Sangre, Seville 233
“The End of this World’s Glories,” by Valdes Leal. La Caridad, Seville 234
“Pietà, or the Virgin supporting the dead body of her Divine Son,” altar-screen, by Luis de Vargas. Santa Maria la Blanca, Seville 235
“St Joseph, holding the Infant Saviour in his arms,” by Murillo. San Telmo, Seville 236
“Our Lady of the Girdle,” by Murillo, San Telmo, Seville 237
“Portrait of Ferdinand VII.,” by Goya. San Telmo, Seville 238
“Portrait of Charles IV.,” by Goya. San Telmo, Seville 239
“The Annunciation,” by F. Zurbarán. San Telmo, Seville 240
“The Death of Laocoon and his Sons at the Siege of Troy,” by El Greco. San Telmo, Seville 241
“Caton of Utique tearing open his wounds,” by Josef Ribera. San Telmo, Seville 242{xx}
“Pietà. The Virgin holding the dead Saviour in her arms,” by Morales. San Telmo, Seville 243
“Portrait of El Greco,” by himself. Gallery of San Telmo, Seville 244
“The Miracle of St Vœu. St Hugo in the refectory with several Chartreux,” by Zurbarán. Seville Museum 245
“The Martyrdom of St Andrew,” by J. de las Roelas. Seville Museum 246
“The Last Supper,” by P. de Cespedes. Seville Museum 247
“Christ on the Cross,” by Zurbarán. Seville Museum 248
Portrait of the figure in Pacheco’s picture at Seville, supposed to represent Cervantes 249
“The Virgin and the Child Jesus,” by Alonso Cano. Seville Cathedral 250
“The Descent from the Cross,” by Alego Fernandez. Seville Cathedral 251
The Cathedral 252
The Giralda 253
The Giralda 254
Cathedral. The Gate of Pardon 255
Cathedral. Puerta de los Palos 256
Plan of the Cathedral 257
Cathedral. View of an organ 258
Cathedral. Monument to Columbus 259
Cathedral. Silver Tabernacle (weighing forty-five arrobas) 260
Alcazar Gardens 261
Alcazar Gardens 262
Alcazar Gardens 263
House of Pilate. The Goddess Ceres 264
House of Pilate. The Goddess Pallas Pacifer 265
Italica 266
Roman Walls 267
Patio de Banderas and the Giralda 268
Plaza de San Francisco 269
St Mark’s Church 270
Plaza de San Fernando 271
The Town Hall. Details of the old part 272{xxi}
Façade of the Palace of San Telmo 273
Statue of Velazquez 274
Plaza de la Constitución 275
Plaza de la Constitución 276
Calle de Sierpes 277
Calle de Sierpes 278
A street in Seville 279
Hercules Avenue 280
The Pasadera 281
Courtyard of La Caridad 282
Plaza de San Fernando 283
Plaza de Gavidia 284
View from the Pasadera 285
The Drive 286
Paseo de las Delicias 287
The Quay 288
Partial view of Seville 289
Plaza de Toros 290
Fields of San Sebastian 291
Park of Maria Luisa 292
Railway Station of M.Z.A. Principal Façade 293
Railway Station of M.Z.A. General View 294
Triana Bridge 295
View from Triana Bridge 296
View from Triana 297
San Telmo from Triana 298
The Cathedral. Our Lord Crucified. Sculpture in the Sacristy 299
Plan of Seville 300




Seville is the most Spanish of the cities of Spain. On her white walls the sunlight plays perpetually, the air is laden with the scent of the orange, the sound of the guitar and castanets is heard continually in the narrow streets. This is the South of romance, the South of which northerners dream and towards which so many of them are drawn by an irresistible fascination. The cities of Leon and Castile are grim and Gothic. Cordova is Moorish; but Seville is not essentially one nor the other, but presents that blending of both styles which makes her typical, which stands for all that Spain means to the average foreigner.

Seville lives. Cordova is dead, and Granada broods over her past. These are cemeteries of a vanished civilisation. Alone among the ancient seats of Moorish dominion, Seville has maintained her prosperity. Her wharves, as in the days of Al Mansûr, are still the resort of sailors from many lands. There is still wealth in her palaces and genius in her schools. To-day she holds the first{2} place in native art, and Garcia y Ramos, Sanchez Perrier, Jimenez Aranda, and Bilbao not unworthily continue the traditions of Murillo and Zurbarán.

The city is Moorish, but informed throughout with the spirit of Spain. In Cordova the Spaniard seems a stranger; in Seville he has assimilated and adapted all that was bequeathed by his onetime rulers till you might think the place had always been his. It is as though the glowing metal of Andalusian life and temper had been poured into a mould made expressly by other hands to receive it. Thus Seville has not died nor decayed like her rivals. Her vitality intoxicates the northerner. Valdés says, “Seville has ever been for me the symbol of light, the city of love and joy.”

In my book, “Moorish Remains in Spain,” I have sketched the history of the city and briefly referred to its importance under the Roman sway. With the few monuments remaining from that time I do not purpose dealing separately—incorporated as they have been, for the most part, with works of more recent construction. Nor has Roman influence left very profound traces in Seville, any more than in the rest of Spain. Señor Rafael Contreras justly remarks that Roman{3} civilisation made no deep impression on the country or the people. “We have in Spain,” he continues, “aqueducts, bridges, circuses, baths, roads, vases, urns, milliaria, statues, and jewellery. Specimens are still found, but, strictly speaking, art with us has never been either Roman or Greek.” And Seville, in particular, even during the Roman occupation, was rather a Punic than a Latin town. As to the successors of the Cæsars—the Visigoths—to them can only be ascribed a few capitals and stone ornaments, roughly executed in the Byzantine style. These, like the Roman remains, were used by the Moors in the construction of those buildings that have determined the physiognomy of Seville.{5}{4}


Seville was not among the spoils of Tarik, conqueror at the Guadalete. That general having directed his march upon Toledo, it was reserved to his superior officer, Musa Ben Nosseyr, to subdue the proudest city of Bætica. The citizens held out for a month and then retired upon Beja in Alemtejo. The Arabian commander left a garrison in the city, henceforward to be known for five hundred and thirty-six years as Ishbiliyah, and pushed forward to Merida. The Sevillians took advantage of his absence to shake off his yoke, assisted by the people of Beja and Niebla. Their triumph was short lived. Abdelasis, son of Musa, fell upon them like a thunderbolt, extinguished the rising in blood, and made the city the seat of government of the newly acquired provinces.

The interesting personality and tragic fate of Seville’s first Viceroy have made the site of his residence a question of some importance. It was formerly believed that he occupied the Acropolis{6} or Citadel, supposed then to be covered by the Alcazar. The researches of Señores Gayangos and Madrazo have made it plain, however, that he established his headquarters in a church which had been dedicated by the sister of St Isidore to the martyrs Rufina and Justa, now amalgamated with the convent of La Trinidad. Adjacent to this building Abdelasis erected a mosque; and it was within its walls, while reciting the first surah of the Koran, that he was assassinated by the emissaries of the Khalif of Damascus—death being a not uncommon reward in the Middle Ages for too brilliant military services rendered to one’s sovereign.

The seat of government was transferred, soon after the murder of the son of Musa, to Cordova, and Seville sank for a time to a subsidiary rank. The various cities of Andalusia were allotted by the governor Abdelmelic among the different Syrian peoples who had flocked over on the news of the conquest; and Ishbiliyah, according to Señor de Madrazo, was assigned to the citizens of Horns, the classic Emesa. Owing to intermarriage between the conquerors and the natives, the distinction between the Moslems according to the places of origin of these early settlers was soon lost in that drawn between the pure-blooded Arabs{7} and the Muwallads or half-breeds. In the meantime the germs of Arabian culture had fallen upon a kindly soil, and a new school of art and letters was in process of formation in Spain. The imposing monuments of Roman, Greek, and Byzantine civilisation, which the victorious hosts of Islam found ever in their path, were not without influence upon their conceptions of the beautiful in form. The fusion of the Hispano-Goths and Arabs likewise tended to produce a commingling of spirit, and ultimately to give birth to an art and a culture racy of the soil. “According to all contemporary writers,” says Señor Rafael Contreras, “it is beyond all doubt that the style which the artists of the Renaissance called Moorish (in the sense of originating in Northern Africa) was never anything of the sort. The details so much admired on account of their richness, the vaultings and the arched hollows practised in the walls, the festoons of the arches, the commarajias and alicates, were Spanish works finer and more delicate than those of the East. The root was originally in Arabia, but it was happily transplanted to Spain, where blossomed that beautiful flower which diffuses its perfume after a lapse of seven centuries.”

Under the Western Khalifate, Seville flourished{8} in spite of the assaults and internecine warfare of which it was frequently the theatre. When in 888 Andalusia became temporarily split up into several nominally independent states, the city acknowledged the sway of Ibrahim Ibn Hajjaj. The chronicler Ben Hayán, often quoted by Señor de Madrazo, describes this prince as keeping up imperial state and riding forth attended by five hundred horsemen. He ventured to assume the tiraz, the official garb of the Amirs of Cordova. To his court flocked the poets, the singers, and the wise men of Islam. Of him it was written, “In all the West I find no right noble man save Ibrahim, but he is nobility itself. When one has known the delight of living with him, to dwell in any other land is misery.” Flattery did not blind the sagacious Ibn Hajjaj to the insecurity of his position, and he bowed before the rising star of the new Khalifa, Abd-er-Rahman III. In 913 Ishbiliyah opened her gates to that powerful ruler and again became subject to Cordova. The city lost nothing by its timely submission. The generous and beneficent Khalifa narrowed and deepened the channel of the Guadalquivir, thus rendering it navigable. He introduced the palm tree from Africa, planted gardens, and adorned the city with splendid{9} edifices. Much of the splendour of the Court of Cordova was reflected on Seville, which certainly rivalled the capital as a seat of learning. Among its citizens was Abu Omar Ahmed Ben Abdallah, surnamed El Begi or “the Sage,” the author of an encyclopædia of sciences, which was long esteemed as a work of marvellous erudition. According to Condé, Abdallah was frequently consulted by the magistrates, even in his early youth, in affairs of the gravest import.

The public edifices of the Pearl of Andalusia were no doubt worthy of its fame as a home of wisdom and culture. In addition to the mosque built by Abdelasis, near or on the spot where the convent of La Trinidad now stands, a notable ornament of the city was the mosque raised on the site of the basilica of St Vincent—immortalised by several memorable Councils. “But who,” asks Señor de Madrazo, “would be capable to-day of describing this edifice? Nothing of it remains except the memory of the place where it stood. Other structures, ampler and more majestic, replaced it when, under the Almoravides and Almohades, Seville recovered its rank as an independent kingdom. Let us content ourselves with recording that the principal mosque, built at the same time as and on the model of that of{10} Cordova, although on a smaller and less sumptuous scale, was situated on the site of the existing Cathedral, and that in the ninth century it was burnt by the Normans. In consequence it is impossible to say if the great horseshoe arches which occur in the cloister of the Cathedral are works earlier or later than that event. It does not appear probable that in the time of the Khalifs the mosque of Seville could have had the considerable dimensions suggested by the northern boundary of the patio de los naranjos. That line is 330 Castilian feet, which would give the mosque, extending from north to south, a length about double, the breadth of the atrium included—unlikely dimensions for a temple which, compared with the Jama of Cordova, was unquestionably of the second class. No one knows who ordered the construction of the primitive mosque of Seville.”

The irruption of the Normans, one of the results of which was the demolition of this edifice, took place in 859. The pirates were afterwards defeated off the coast of Murcia by the Moorish squadron, and made sail for Catalonia. A serious descent had taken place in 844. Lisbon was the first city to fall a victim to the Northmen, whom we next hear of at Cadiz and at Sidonia, where{11} they defeated the Khalifa’s troops in a pitched battle. Fierce fighting took place before the walls of Ishbiliyah, the invaders being uniformly victorious. Laden with the richest booty, they at length retired overland to Lisbon, where they took to their ships. They not only destroyed the mosque of Seville, but threw down the city walls, which dated from Roman times. These were repaired by Abd-er-Rahman II., to be partially demolished again by Abd-er-Rahman III. on his triumphal entry into the amirate of Ibrahim Ibn Hajjaj.

The subjection of Seville to the yoke of the Khalifs of Cordova was, unhappily for the city and for Islam generally, not of long duration. The mighty Wizir, Al Mansûr, restored the waning power of the Crescent and drove back the Christians into the mountain fastnesses of the North. But the collapse of the Western Khalifate had been postponed, not averted. This Al Mansûr well knew. On his deathbed he reproached his son for yielding to unmanly tears, saying, “This is to me a signal of the approaching decay of this empire.” His prediction did not long await fulfilment. In 1009, seven years after his death, his second son, Abd-er-Rahman Sanjul, had the audacity to proclaim himself the Khalif Hisha{12}m’s heir. The empire became at once resolved into its component parts. On all sides the kadis and governors revolted. Independent amirates were set up in all the considerable towns. At Ishbiliyah the shrewd and powerful kadi, Mohammed Ben Abbad, perceived his opportunity, but contrived to excuse his ambition by a specious pretence of legality. An impostor, impersonating the legitimate Khalifa, Hisham, appeared on the troubled scene. Ben Abbad espoused his cause and pretended to govern the city in his name. His power firmly established, the kadi announced that the Khalifa was dead and had designated him as his lawful successor. For the second time, Seville rose to the dignity of an independent state.

The Abbadites were a splendour-loving race. Their Court was extolled by Arabian writers as rivalling that of the Abbasside sultans. Under their rule the city waxed every year more beautiful, more prosperous. Patrons of art and letters, the amirs were vigorous and capable sovereigns, and in all Musulman Spain no state was more powerful than theirs, except Toledo. The second monarch of the dynasty, Abu Amru Abbad, better known as Mo’temid, was a mighty warrior. He reduced Algarve and took Cordova. When not{13} engaged in martial exploits he took delight in composing verses, in the society of talented men, and in the contemplation of the garden of his enemies’ heads, which he had laid out at the door of his palace. He was succeeded in 1069 by his son Abul-Kasim Mohammed, a native of Beja.

The Crescent was waning. All Al Mansûr’s conquests had been recovered by the Christians. Toledo fell before the arms of Alfonso III. The Castilians overran Portugal and penetrated into Andalusia. The Amir of Ishbiliyah took the only course open to him at the moment, and cultivated the friendship of the Castilian king. He consented to the removal of the body of St Isidore from Italica to Leon, and gave his daughter Zayda in a sort of left-handed marriage to Alfonso III. As the Christian king was already the husband of Queen Constancia, and Zayda’s dowry consisted of the most valuable conquests of the Amir Mut’adid, this transaction did not reflect much credit on either party. But it purchased for Seville a period of peace and security, during which its inhabitants became hopelessly enervated by luxury and ease.

The Abbadite sovereigns have left but few traces on the city which they did so much to{14} embellish and improve. To them, however, may be ascribed the foundation of the Alcazar. Such at least is the opinion of Señor de Madrazo. In the horseshoe arches of the Salón de los Embajadores with their rich Corinthian capitals—on which the names of different Khalifas are inscribed—we detect a resemblance to the mosque of Cordova, and recognise the early Saracenic style, unaffected by African, or properly Moorish, influence. To the same period and school of architecture, Señor de Madrazo attributes the ornate arcading of the narrow staircase leading from the entrance court to near the balcony of the chapel; and the three arches with capitals in the abandoned apartment adjoining the Salón de los Principes. The ultra-semicircular curve of the arch occurs very rarely in later or true Moorish architecture.

The Moslem conquerors had, in the majority of cases, converted to their use the Christian churches in the cities they occupied. Many of the mosques that adorned Ishbiliyah during the reign of the race of Abbad had been adapted in this way, the lines of pillars being readjusted in most cases to give the structure that south-easterly direction that the law of Islam required. Traces of these Abbadite mosques remain in the churches of San{15} Juan Bautista and San Salvador. On the wall of the former was found an inscription which has been thus translated by Don Pascual de Gayangos: “In the name of the clement and merciful Allah. May the blessing of Allah be on Mohammed, the seal of the Prophets. The Princess and august mother of Er-Rashid Abu-l-hosaya Obayd’ allah, son of Mut’amid Abu-l-Kasim Mohammed Ben Abbad (may Allah make his empire and power lasting, as well as the glory of both!), ordered this minaret to be raised in her mosque (which may Allah preserve!), awaiting the abundance of His rewards; and the work was finished, with the help of Allah, by the hand of the Wizir and Katib, the Amir Abu-l-Kasim Ben Battah (may Allah be propitious to me!), in the moon of Shaaban, in the year 478.”

The site of the present collegiate church of San Salvador was occupied by a mosque, which was used by the Moors for a considerable time after the Christian conquest, and preserved its form down to the year 1669. An inscription on white marble relates that a minaret was constructed in the year 1080, by Mut’amid Ben Abbad, that “the calling to prayer might not be interrupted.”

The reign of the Abbadites was brought to a close by the advent of the Almoravides (a word{16} allied to Marabut), who, at the invitation of the Andalusian amirs, invaded Spain in the last quarter of the eleventh century. It was a story common enough in history. The Africans came at first as the friends and allies of the Spanish Arabs, and effectually stemmed the tide of Christian successes; but in 1091, Yusuf, the Almoravide leader, annexed Ishbiliyah and all Andalusia to his vast empire. The city became a mere provincial centre, the appanage of the Berber monarch. Mo’temid, loaded with chains, was transported to Africa, where he died in 1095, having reigned as amir twenty-seven years.

The Almoravides lived by the sword and perished by the sword. Perpetually engaged in warfare, among themselves or with the Christians, they left no deep impress on the character of Seville or of Andalusia generally. With them the student of the arts in Spain has little concern. They burst like a tornado over the land, destroying much, creating nothing. Little more than half-a-century had passed since the downfall of the Abbadites, when the star of the Almoravides paled before the rising crescent of the Almohades or Al Muwahedun. The new sectaries, as fierce as their predecessors, but more indomitable and austere, wrested all Barbary from the descendants{17} of Tashrin and annexed Ishbiliyah to their empire in 1146.

The reign of the Almohades is the most interesting period in the history of the city. It was marked by the foundation of Seville’s most important existing edifices, and by the introduction of a new style of architecture. Hitherto, what is loosely called Moorish art, had been native Andalusian art, following Saracenic or Syrian ideals. Of this first period, the Mezquita at Cordova is the finest monument. Seville is peculiarly the city of the second, or true, Moorish period. Byzantine and Oriental influences disappeared and were supplanted by the African or, more properly, Berber, character. The new conquerors of Andalusia were a rude, hardy race, and we find something virile and coarse in their architecture. “Beside the Giralda of Seville,” remarks Herr Karl Eugen Schmidt, “the columns of the mosque of Cordova seem small; the pretty halls of the Alhambra have something weak and feminine.” The weakness of the Almohade builders, as is usually the case with imperfectly civilised peoples, lay in an excessive fondness for ornamentation. Señor de Madrazo’s criticism, though severe, is, on the whole, just. While admitting the beauty of certain of their innovations, such as the stalac{18}tited dome (afterwards carried out with so much effect at Granada) and the pointed arch, he goes on to say, “The Almohade architecture displays that debased taste which is imitative rather than instinctive, and which creates only by exaggerating forms to a degree inconsistent with the design—differing from the Mudejar work of the thirteenth to the fifteenth centuries, which reveals an instinctive feeling for the beautiful in ornament, which never loses sight of the graceful, the elegant, and the bold, and which consequently never betrays any aberration. The Almohade style, in short, at once manifests the vigour of the barbarian civilised by conquest; the Mudejar style has the enduring character of the works of a man of taste, wise in good and evil fortune; both are the faithful expression of the culture of peoples of different origins and aptitudes.” Elsewhere the same authority observes, “It is certain that the innovation characteristic of Musulman architecture in Spain in the eleventh and twelfth centuries, cannot be explained as a natural mutation from the Arabic art of the Khalifate, or as a prelude to the art of Granada, because there is very little similarity between the style called secondary or Moorish and the Arab-Byzantine and Andalusian; while, on the other hand, it is evident{19} that the Saracenic monuments of Fez and Morocco, of the reigns of Yusuf Ben Tashfin, Abdul Ben Ali, Al Mansûr, and Nasr, partake of the character of the ornamentation introduced by the Almohades into Spain.”

The most important example of this style is the Giralda, now adjacent to the magnificent Christian cathedral which was reared in later days on the foundations of the great mosque. Señor de Madrazo has reconstructed for us the general form and aspect of the finest monument of Almohade piety. The mosque replaced that which had been destroyed by the Normans, and appears to have embodied some part of the original structure, to judge from the horseshoe arches still to be seen in the Claustro de la Granada. The work was begun by order of Yusuf, the son of Abd-er-Rahman, the founder of the dynasty. The mosque formed a rectangle, extending from north to south, and surrounded by cloisters and courtyards. The interior was divided into longitudinal naves by a series of marble columns, which supported an adorned ceiling of carved and painted wood. The mihrab, or sanctuary, would have been at the southern extremity, after the Syrian custom, it taking the Spanish Muslims some time to realise that Mecca lay east rather than{20} south of Andalusia. The mosque would also have contained a maksurrah, or vestibule, for the imam and his officials, the nimbar, or pulpit, for the sovereign, and the tribune for the preacher. In the northern court was the existing fountain for ablutions, surmounted by a cupola, and surrounded by orange and palm-trees. The eastern court was known as the Court of the Elms. In all probability, attached to the sacred edifice, was the turbeh, or tomb of the founder.

The Giralda is not only the most important and famous of minarets, but is among the three or four most remarkable towers in the world. It is more to Seville than Giotto’s campanile to Florence; it rivals in fame the now vanished campanile of St Mark’s. Unlike similar edifices in Egypt and Syria, minarets among the western Moslems were built strong and massive, rather than slender and elegant. The Giralda,” says Herr Schmidt, “is one of the strongest buildings in the world, and few of our Christian church towers could have withstood so successfully the lightning and the earthquake.”

The Giralda is quadrangular in section, and covers a space of 13.60 square metres. The architect—whose name is variously spelt Gever, Hever, and Djabir—is said to have used quantities of Roman{21} remains and statuary as a base for the foundations. The thickness of the wall at the base is nine feet, but it increases with the height, the interior space narrowing accordingly. The lower part of the tower is of stone, the upper part of brick. At a height of about 15 metres above the ground begin those decorations in stone which lend such elegance and beauty to this stout structure. They consist in vertical series of windows—mostly ajimeces or twin-windows—some with the horseshoe, others the pointed arch, flanked on either side by broad vertical bands of beautiful stone tracery, resembling trellis-work. The windows are enclosed in arches which exhibit considerable diversity of design. The decoration as a whole is harmonious and beautiful.

The Moorish tower only reaches to a height of 70 metres. The remaining portion, reaching upwards for another 25 metres, is of Christian workmanship. Before this was added, the tower appears to have been crowned, like most West African minarets, by a small pinnacle or turret. This supported four balls or apples of gilded copper, one of which was so large that the gates of Seville had to be widened that it might be brought into the city. The iron bar which supported the balls weighed about ten hundredweights, and{22} the whole was cast by a Sicilian Arab named Abu Leyth, at a cost of £50,000 sterling. We owe these particulars to a Mohammedan writer of the period, and his accuracy was confirmed in 1395, when the balls, having been thrown to the ground by an earthquake, were carefully weighed and examined.

The upper or newer part of the Giralda was built by Fernando Ruiz in 1568. Despite its Doric and Ionic columns and Renaissance style, it does not mar the beauty and harmony of the whole building, and is itself a remarkably graceful work. The entablature of the second stage or storey bears the words Turris fortissima Nomen Domini. The whole fabric is surmounted by the bronze statue of Faith, executed by Bartolomé Morel in 1568. It stands fourteen feet high, and weighs twenty-five hundredweights, yet so wonderful is the workmanship that it turns with every breath of the wind. Hence the name applied to the whole tower—Giralda—from que gira, “which turns.” The figure wears a Roman helmet. The right hand clasps the labarum of Constantine, and the left a palm branch symbolical of victory.

The Giralda is ascended by means of thirty-five inclined planes, up which a horse might be ridden with ease to the very top. The various{23} cuerpos or stages of the ascent are all named. The Cuerpo de Campanas is named after its fine peal of bells. The bell named Santa Maria was hung in 1588 by order of the Archbishop Gonzalo de Mena. It cost ten thousand ducats, and weighs eighteen tons. The Cuerpo de Azucenas (or of the lilies) is so named after its urns with floral decorations in ironwork. El Cuerpo del Reloj (clock tower) contains a clock partly constructed in 1765 by the monk José Cordero, with pieces of another placed here in 1400 in the presence of Don Enrique III.—the first tower-clock set up in Spain. The Cuerpos de Estrellas (stars) and de las Corambolas (billiard-balls) are named after the predominant devices in their schemes of decoration.

The highest platform of the Giralda affords, as might be expected, a very extensive view. On the whole, the prospect is disappointing. The neighbourhood of Seville is not beautiful, nor are there any very notable sites or natural features included within the panorama. Standing below Morel’s great statue, however, and gazing down upon the city, interesting considerations naturally present themselves. That the figure of Christian faith should thus be reared on the summit of a building specially intended to stimu{24}late the zeal and to excite the devotion of the followers of Islam is a reflection calculated to give profound satisfaction to the devout Spaniard. The whimsical philosopher may also find an appropriateness in the handiwork of the men of the simpler, cruder faith conducting one upwards to the more refined and complicated creed. I do not know if Mohammedans ever visit Seville. If so, they doubtless console themselves for the desecration of their sacred edifices by thoughts of Hagia Sophia and the onetime Christian churches of the East. And the Giralda has fared better at the hands of the Christians than many a church of their own has done. I may instance the chapel at Mayence, which with practically no alteration in its architecture and internal arrangements now serves the purpose of a beer-shop.

As the Giralda attests the size and beauty of the great mosque, so several smaller towers exist in Seville to mark the sites of the lesser Mohammedan temples. The most important of these is the tower or minaret of San Marcos. It is seventy-five feet high and ten feet broad—the highest edifice in the city except the Giralda. It is built according to the pure Almohade style, “without any admixture,” points out Señor de{25} Madrazo, “of the features taken from the Christian architecture of the West.” According to Mr Walter M. Gallichan there is a tradition that Cervantes used to ascend this tower to scan the vicinity in search of a Sevillian beauty of whom he was enamoured. The church is Gothic, and dates from 1478, but the beautiful portal exhibits Mudejar workmanship, and may be ascribed to the days of St Ferdinand or of his immediate successors.

The parish churches of San Juan Bautista, Santa Marina, San Esteban, Santiago, Santa Catalina, San Julián, San Ildefonso, San Andrés, San Vicente, San Lorenzo, San Bartolomé, Santa Cruz, and Santa Maria de las Nieves (some of which no longer exist), were all mosques during the Almohade era. A few continue to preserve their minarets and mihrabs, generally restored and modified almost beyond recognition.

While attending by the construction of these numerous places of worship to the spiritual needs of their subjects, the Almohade rulers neglected no means of strengthening Ishbiliyah and of promoting its general prosperity. The city became the most important seat of Mohammedan power in the West. Trade rapidly increased, and the town became the principal resort of the{26} weavers, metal-workers, and other prominent Moorish craftsmen. Abu Yakub Yusuf was the first to throw a bridge of boats across the Guadalquivir, over which troops first passed on October 11th, 1171. This bridge immensely added to the strength of the city as a fortified place, as it established permanent communication between it and its principal source of supplies, the fertile district called the Ajarafa on the right bank of the river. The charms of this expanse, otherwise known as the Orchard of Hercules, are rapturously described by Arab historians. These are the words of the poet Ibn Saffar: “The Ajarafa surpasseth in beauty and fertility all the lands of the world. The oil of its olives goeth even to far Alexandria; its farms and orchards exceed those of other countries in size and convenience; so white and clean are they, that they appear like so many stars in a sky of olive gardens.” The Ajarafa is an Arabia Felix without wild beasts, the Guadalquivir a Nile without crocodiles. El Makkari says it measured about forty miles in each direction and contained a numerous population. Those who know the rather dreary country extending westward of the modern city will realise the melancholy change brought about by time.{27}

The city then, as now, was girdled by strong walls. The gates were twelve in number. Those not turned towards the river were strongly fortified with towers and bastions. The farther bank of the Guadalquivir was defended by castles and redoubts. Upwards of a hundred keeps and watch-towers studded the adjacent country.

One of the most vital points in the defensive works was the poetically-named Torre del Oro (tower of gold), which still exists, and is familiar to every visitor to the city. The tower is a twelve-sided polygon of three storeys. It is surmounted by a smaller tower, also of twelve sides, which in turn supports a small round cupola. This superstructure was added in the eighteenth century, whereas the main building was erected by the Almohade governor Abu-l-Ala in the year 1220. The tower was in those days connected with the walls of the city by what is called in military parlance a curtain, which was pulled down as late as in 1821. The outwork faced another watch-tower on the opposite bank of the river, and a great iron chain was drawn from the one to the other, effectually closing the harbour against hostile vessels. The assaults of the foeman and the deadlier ravages of time have stripped this strong and graceful{28} monument of the beautiful tiles or azulejos with which it was once adorned, and which seemed to have earned for it its present name. No Danaë, alas! waits in this tower of gold to-day for tyrant or deliverer. The place is occupied by clerks, whose pens are ever busy recording the shipments of coal brought by incoming steamers; and the immediate vicinity is infested by “tramp” sailors of all nationalities, mostly British, for whose benefit, presumably, rum, “Old Tom,” and other stimulating but unromantic beverages are dispensed at kiosks and bars.

The spot appears to have been the scene of a picturesque episode recounted by Contreras. It is worth repeating as revealing the polished character of the dusky amirs who ruled in Ishbiliyah three hundred years before Charles of Orleans devoted his declining years, in his palace by the Loire, to the making of ballads, triolets, and rondeaux.

The Abbadite amir, Mut’adid-billah, was walking one day in the field of Marchab Afida, on the banks of the Guadalquivir, and observed the breeze ruffling the surface of the water. He improvised the line—

“The breeze makes of the water a cuirass”—

and turning to the poet Aben Amr, called upon{29} him to complete the verse. While the laureate was still in the throes of poetical parturition, a young girl of the people who happened to be standing by, anticipated him, and gave utterance to these original lines—

“A cuirass strong, magnificent for combat,
As if the water had been frozen truly.”

The prince was astonished at this display of the lyrical gift by a woman of her condition, and ordered one of his eunuchs to conduct her to the palace. On being questioned, she informed him that she was called Romikiwa, because she was the slave of Romiya, and was a driver of mules.

“Are you married?” asked the prince.

“No, sire.”

“It is well, for I shall buy you and marry you.”

It is to be hoped that Romikiwa’s merits as a wife exceeded her abilities as a poetess.

The Alcazar, the palace inhabited by this dilettante amir and his successors of the race of Abbad, continued to be the principal residence of the subsequent rulers of Ishbiliyah, both Almoravides and Almohades. There can be no doubt that the latter restored and reconstructed the building to an extent that almost effaced the work of the founders. But the impress of the Berber architects was in its turn almost entirely lost when{30} the fabric came into the possession of the Christians. Thus the Alcazar cannot be rightly classed among the monuments of the Almohade period. It is certain that its extent at this time was greater than it is now. Its enclosure was bounded by the city wall, which ran down to the river, and occupied the whole angle formed by the two. The Alcazar was then primarily a fortress, and its walls were flanked on every side by watch-towers such as those with which its front is still furnished. The principal entrance seems to have been at the Torre de la Plata (silver tower), which was standing as late as 1821. Finally, among the works of the last Musulman rulers of Seville, we must not omit to mention the great aqueduct of four hundred and ten arches, called the Caños de Carmona, constructed in 1172, which ensured the city an abundant supply of water from the reservoir of Alcalá de Guadaira. The Almohades had other palaces in the city. The old residence of Abdelasis yet remained, and we hear of the palaces of St Hermenegildo and of the Bib Ragel (or northern gate).

The Almohades kinged it nobly in Andalusia; but these successive revivals of fervour and activity in Western Islam may be compared to the last strong spasms of a dying man. Despite{31} these furious inrushes of Almoravides and Al-Muwahedun, the Christians were slowly but surely gaining ground. The lieutenants of Abd-ul-Mumin subjugated Granada and Almeria in the east, Badajoz and Evora in the west. The Moorish amir of Valencia did homage to Yusuf, Abd-ul-Mumin’s son and successor, at Ishbiliyah. The third sovereign of the dynasty, Yakub Al Mansûr, dealt what seemed a crushing blow to the allied Spaniards at Alarcos in 1195. Had that victory been properly followed up, perhaps to this day a Mohammedan power might have been seated firmly in the south of Spain, and the Strait of Gibraltar might have been a western Dardanelles.

But the Christians rallied. In 1212 was fought the decisive battle of Las Navas de Tolosa, between the Moorish Khalif An-Nasr and the Castilian King, Alfonso VIII. The Musulmans were totally defeated. “Six hundred thousand combatants,” says El Makkari, with perhaps a trace of Oriental hyperbole, “were led by An-Nasr to the field of battle; all perished, except a few that did not amount to a thousand. This battle was a malediction, not only on Andalus but on all the West.”

Yet the downfall of the Islamite power did not immediately follow. An-Nasr survived his defeat{32} seven years, and his son, Abu Yusuf Yakub Al-Mustanser, reigned four more inglorious years. His dying (1223) without children was the signal for dissensions and disturbances throughout his still vast empire. While Abd-ul-Wahed was proclaimed Khalifa in Morocco, Al Adil took up the reins of sovereignty in Murcia. Both pretenders soon disappeared from the troubled scene, Abd-ul-Wahed being assassinated, and his rival, after having been defeated in Spain by the Christians, being forced to take refuge in Morocco, there to abdicate in favour of An-Nasr’s son, Yahya. Abu-l-Ala, Al Adil’s brother, who had been left as governor in Ishbiliyah, declared himself Khalifa on learning the accession of Yahya. He was the last of the race of Abd-ul-Mumin to rule in the city. He was driven from Spain—to found a wider empire in Africa—by Mohammed Ben Yusuf, variously styled Ben Hud and Al Jodhami.

The storm-clouds were gathering fast over the beautiful city by the Guadalquivir. Spain’s great national hero, St Ferdinand, now wore the crown of Castile. He routed the Moors at Jerez, and in 1235 wrested from them their most ancient and glorious metropolis, Cordova. The discord and sedition which history shows are the usual prelude to the extinction of a state, were not{33} wanting at Seville. Ben Hud died in 1238, and his subjects turned once more in their despair to the African Almohades. But no new army of Ghazis crossed the strait to do battle with the Unbeliever. Despite their protestations of allegiance to the Khalifa of Barbary, the Moors of Seville were left to fight their last fight unassisted. When the Castilian army appeared before the walls, the defence was directed, strangely enough for a Mohammedan community, by a junta of six persons. Their names are worthy of being recorded: Abu Faris, called by the Spaniards Axataf, Sakkáf, Shoayb, Ben Khaldûn, Ben Khiyar, and Abu Bekr Ben Sharih.

The siege of Ishbiliyah lasted fifteen months. Material assistance was lent to the Spaniards by Musulman auxiliaries, among them the Amirs of Jaën and Granada. The Castilian fleet under Admiral Ramon Bonifaz dispersed the Moorish ships, while the Sevillian land forces were driven to take refuge within the walls. The Admiral succeeded in breaking the chain stretched across the river, and thus cut off the garrison from their principal magazines in the suburb of Triana. Only when in the clutches of famine did the defenders ask for terms. They offered to give up the city, on the condition that they should be{34} allowed to demolish the mosque. The Infante Alfonso replied that if a single brick were displaced, the whole population would be put to the sword. The garrison finally surrendered on the promise that all inhabitants who desired to do so should be free to leave the city with their families and property, and that those who elected to remain should pay the Castilian king the same tribute they had hitherto paid to the native ruler. The brave Abu Faris was invited to accept an honourable post under the conqueror, but he magnanimously declined and retired to Africa. Thither thousands of his countrymen followed him. Indeed, probably only a few thousand Moors remained behind in Seville.

Ferdinand took possession on December 22nd, 1248. He took up his residence in the Alcazar and allotted houses and territory to his officers. It is worthy of remark that the first Christian soldier to ascend the Giralda was a Scotsman named Lawrence Poore. Among the first duties of the saintly king was the purification of the mosque and its conversion into a Christian church.

Seville, after having remained in the hands of the Musulmans five hundred and thirty-six years, had passed from them for ever.{35}


The outward transformation of the Moorish Ishbiliyah into Seville, the Christian capital, proceeded slowly and gradually. The personal devotion and profound religious fervour of King Ferdinand notwithstanding, even the war which resulted in the taking of the city cannot be regarded as a crusade. As we have seen, Mohammedan troops fought under the banners of the Christian king and contributed to his victory; and in the division of the spoils these allies were not forgotten. Satisfied with their triumph, the Castilians showed moderation in their treatment of their Muslim subjects. The fall of Ishbiliyah was attended by no outburst of iconoclastic fury. The conquerors were delighted with the beauty and richness of their prize, and had no desire to impair the handiwork of their predecessors.

The transition from the pure Arabic and Almohade styles of architecture to what is called the Mudejar style was therefore almost imperceptible. The physiognomy of the city altered but slowly.{36} But the alteration was from the first inevitable. Houses and lands were bestowed on knights from all parts of Spain on the condition of their residing permanently in Seville. Catalans, Galicians, Castilians of all trades and ranks flocked in, and their influence was bound sooner or later to assert itself. But the builders and artisan class remained for many years composed of Moors—sometimes Christianised, but thoroughly imbued with the artistic traditions of their forebears. Thus came about that peculiar and graceful blending of the Moorish and Gothic and earlier Renaissance styles known to Spanish writers as the Mudejar. Its differentiation from the Arabic naturally became more marked as the centuries rolled by.

Moorish architecture was thus accepted by the conquerors of Seville both from choice and necessity. But certain important modifications in the structure of buildings became immediately necessary, owing to the difference of faith and customs. The mosque and the dwelling-house alike had to undergo some alteration. No mihrab was required, nor minaret, nor the south-easterly position; in the dwelling-house there was no need for harem, for retired praying-place, for the baths so dear to the Andalusian Muslim.{37}

Probably the first building of importance to be affected by the change of rulers was the mosque. The outermost naves were divided into chapels, the names and order of which have been preserved for us by Zuñiga (quoted by Madrazo).

The royal chapel occupied the centre of the eastern wall; the other chapels were: San Pedro, Santiago, Santa Barbara, San Bernardo, San Sebastian (in this chapel were buried some Moors of the blood royal who had been baptised and had served King Ferdinand, among them being Don Fernando Abdelmon, son of Abu Seyt, Amir of Baeza), San Ildefonso, San Francisco, San Andrés, San Clemente, San Felipe, San Mateo (containing the sepulchre of the Admiral of Castile, Don Juan de Luna), Don Alonso Perez de Guzman, San Miguel, San Marcos, San Lucas, San Bernabe, San Simon, and San Judas, and the Magdalena. In the last-named chapel were buried the knights who had taken part in the capture of the city. Attached to it was the altar of Nuestra Señora de Pilar, a reputedly miraculous shrine which became the objective of pilgrims in after years.

Chapels were also constructed in the four cloisters of the Patio de los Naranjos. The cloister of the Caballeros contained eight—one of which, Santa Lucia, was the place of sepulchre of{38} the Haro family; the cloister of the Granada contained three; the cloister of San Esteban, three; the cloister of San Jorge or Del Lagarto, four—in one of which, San Jorge, reposed that doughty warrior, Garci Perez de Vargas, who distinguished himself before all his compeers at the assault of Seville. This cloister was named Del Lagarto from the remains of an enormous crocodile, a present from the Sultan of Egypt to King Alfonso el Sabio, which are still suspended from the roof.

The cathedral—for so we must now call the mosque—was endowed and richly embellished by St Ferdinand’s son and successor, the bookish monarch Alfonso el Sabio. He also bestowed upon Seville its existing coat-of-arms, consisting of the device NO8DO, which frequently appears, to the bewilderment of strangers, on public buildings, uniforms, and documents. The knot is in the vernacular madeja; the device thus reads no madeja do, or, with an excusable pun, no me ha dejado—“it has not deserted me.” This honourable motto the city won by its loyalty to Alfonso during the civil wars which distracted the kingdom during his reign. Seville bears the splendid title of “Most noble, most loyal, most heroic, and unconquered city” (muy noble, muy leal, muy heroica, y{39} invicta). The surname “most noble” was bestowed upon it by St Ferdinand; the style “most faithful” it received from Juan II. in remembrance of its resistance to the Infante Don Enrique; “most heroic” from Fernando VII. in recognition of its devotion to the national cause during the War of Independence; and “unconquered” from Isabel II. to commemorate its defence against the army of Espartero in July 1843.

The successors of the sainted king made their home in the Alcazar, and adapted themselves to an environment created by their traditional foes. The personality which looms largest in the history of the city is that of Don Pedro I., surnamed the Cruel, or, by his few admirers, ‘the Justiciary.’ What Harun-al-Rashid is in the story of Bagdad is this ferocious monarch in the annals of Seville. Countless are the tales, the ballads, and traditions of which he is the subject. Curiously enough, Pedro enjoyed a certain measure of popularity in the country he misgoverned. He was undoubtedly a vigilant protector of the humbler classes of his subjects against the tyranny of the aristocracy, and officials, and appears to have combined a grim humour and a strain of what we should now call Bohemianism, with a tiger-like ferocity. He was fond of rambling incognito through the poorer{40} quarters of the city; and no account of Seville can be considered complete without a relation of one of his most notable adventures in the street called Calle de la Cabeza de Don Pedro.

The king had promulgated a decree holding the municipal authorities answerable with their lives for the preservation of peace and public order within their jurisdiction. A few nights later, wandering, heavily cloaked as we may suppose, through a dark alley, a gentleman brushed rudely against him. A brawl ensued, swords were drawn, and Pedro ran his subject through the body. Flattering himself that there had been no witness to the encounter, he stalked away. In the morning the hidalgo’s body was found, but there appeared to be no clue as to the assassin. The king summoned the Alcalde and reminded him of the edict. If the miscreant were not discovered within two days the luckless magistrate must himself pay the penalty on the scaffold. It was a situation with precisely the humorous aspect that Pedro relished.

But presently to the Alcalde came an old lady with a strange but welcome story. She told how she had seen a fight between two gentlemen, the previous night, from her bed-chamber window. She witnessed the fatal termination, and lo! the{41} light of her candle fell full on the face of the murderer; and as he bent forward, she heard his knee crack. By his features and by this well-known physical peculiarity, she recognised, beyond all possibility of a mistake, the king.

Next day the Alcalde invited his sovereign to attend the execution of the criminal. Greatly wondering, no doubt, Pedro came. Dangling from a rope he beheld his own effigy. “It is well,” he said, after an ominous pause. “Justice has been done. I am satisfied.”

We may be inclined to disagree with the king’s conception of justice as evinced on this occasion. More equitable and humorous was his action when a priest, for murdering a shoemaker, was condemned by his ecclesiastical superiors to suspension from his sacerdotal functions for twelve months. Pedro thereupon decreed that any tradesman who slew a priest should be punished by being restrained from exercising his trade for the like period!

The catalogue of this Castilian monarch’s crimes proves interesting if gloomy reading. He left his wife, Blanche de Bourbon, to perish in a dungeon; he married Juana de Castro and insultingly repudiated her within forty-eight hours; he put to death his father’s mistress, Leonor de{42} Guzman. He threw the young daughter of his brother, Enrique de Trastamara, naked to the lions, like some Christian virgin-martyr. But the good-humoured (and possibly well-fed) brutes refused to touch the proffered prey. Not wishing to be outdone in generosity by a wild beast, Pedro ever afterwards treated the maiden kindly. She was known, in remembrance of her terrible experience, as Leonor de los Leones.

The Jew, Don Simuel Ben Levi, had served Pedro long and only too faithfully as treasurer and tax-gatherer. It was whispered in his master’s ear that half the wealth that should fill the royal coffers was diverted into his own. Ben Levi was seized without warning and placed on the rack, where the noble Israelite is said to have died, not of pain, but of pure indignation. Under his house—so the story has it—was a cavern filled with three piles of gold and silver so high that a man standing behind any one of them was completely hidden. “Had Don Simuel given me the third of the least of these three piles,” exclaimed the king, “I would not have had him tortured. Why would he rather die than speak?”

Somewhat more excusable was the treatment meted out to the Red King of Granada, Abu Saïd; for this prince was himself a usurper, and had{43} behaved traitorously towards his own sovereign and his suzerain, the King of Castile. Fearing Pedro’s resentment, he appeared at his court at Seville with a retinue of three hundred, loaded with presents, among which was the enormous ruby that now decorates the Crown of England. He was received in audience by the Spanish king, whom he begged to arbitrate between him and the deposed King of Granada. Pedro returned a gracious reply, and entertained the Red King in the Alcazar. Before many hours had passed the Moors were seized in their apartments and stripped of their raiment and valuables. Abu Saïd, mounted on a donkey and ridiculously attired, was taken, with thirty-six of his courtiers, to a field outside the town. There they were bound to posts. A train of horsemen appeared, Don Pedro among them, and transfixed the helpless men with darts, the king shouting as he hurled his missiles at the luckless Abu Saïd, “This for the treaty you made me conclude with Aragon!” “This for the castle you lost me!” The Moors met their death with the stoical resignation of their race.

That atrocities committed against Jews and infidels, against even members of the royal family, should be regarded with indifference by the public{44} of that day need not surprise us. But the people of Seville tamely suffered the most cruel wrongs to be inflicted by the tyrant on their own fellow-citizens. After his (or rather the Black Prince’s) victory over Don Enrique at Najera (1367), the Admiral Bocanegra and Don Juan Ponce de Leon were beheaded on the Plaza San Francisco. Garci Jufre Tenorio, the mayor of the city, also suffered death. The property of Doña Teresa Jufre was confiscated because she had spoken ill of his Majesty. Doña Urraca Osorio, because her son had taken part with Don Enrique in the revolt, was burned at the stake on the Alameda. Her servant, Leonor Dávalos, threw herself into the flames and shared the fate of her mistress. In consequence of this persecution, Seville lost several of her most illustrious families, which either became extinguished or removed themselves to other parts of Spain.

So much for the picturesque if repugnant personality of Pedro I. With his sinister memory the Alcazar is so intimately associated, and the part he took in its reconstruction was so conspicuous that this may be deemed the proper place to deal with that famous building—one of the two most important in Seville.{45}


The Alcazar,” says Señor Rafaél Contreras, “is not a classic work, nor does it present to-day that stamp of originality and that ineffaceable character which distinguish ancient works like the Parthenon and modern works like the Escorial. In the Alcazar of Yakub Yusuf the influence of the heroic generation has faded away, and it portrays instead the daily life of our Christian kings who have enriched it with a thousand pages of glorious history. The Almohades, who impressed on the building their African characteristics in 1181, and Jalubi, who had been a follower of Al-Mehdi in the conquest of Africa, left on its walls traces of the Roman influences met with in the course of their movements. St Ferdinand, who conquered it, Don Pedro I., who restored it, Don Juan II., who reconstructed the most elegant apartments, the Catholic sovereigns, who built within its precincts chapels and oratories, Charles V., who added more than a half in the modified style of that epoch of the Renaissance, Philip III. and Philip V., who enlarged it still more by build{46}ing in the adjacent gardens—these, and other princes who inhabited it during six centuries, have changed the original structure to such an extent that to-day it is far from being a monument of oriental art, though we find it covered with fine arabesques and embellished with mosaics and gilding.”

Though not a monument of oriental art, the Alcazar seems to us to have claims to rank as a specimen of Moorish architecture; for the general character of the structure was determined by the restorations effected by order of Pedro I., and these were, probably exclusively, the work of Moorish artisans, not only of Seville, but from Granada, then a Moorish city. This accounts for the resemblance of this palace to the more famous Alhambra. But the Alcazar is not to be dismissed as a mere pseudo-Moorish palace. It remains, to a great extent, the work of Moorish hands and the conception of Moorish architects.

In spite of the severe strictures of fastidious observers, the Alcazar produces a very pleasing impression on northern visitors. Mr W. M. Gallichan writes: “It is a palace of dreams, encircled by lovely perfumed gardens. Its courts and salons are redolent of Moorish days and haunted by the spirits of turbaned sheiks, philo{47}sophers, minstrels, and dark-eyed beauties of the harem.... The nightingales still sing among the odorous orange bloom, and in the tangles of roses birds still build their nests. Fountains tinkle beneath gently moving palms; the savour of orientalism clings to the spot. Here wise men discussed in the cool of summer nights, when the moon stood high over the Giralda and white beams fell through the spreading boughs of the lemon trees, and shivered upon the tiled pavements.

“In this garden the musicians played and the tawny dancers writhed and curved their lissome bodies, in dramatic Eastern dances. Ichabod! The moody potentate, bowed down with the cares of high office, no longer treads the dim corridor or lingers in the shade of the palm trees, lost in cogitation. No sound of gaiety reverberates in the deserted courts; no voice of orator is heard in the Hall of Justice. The green lizards bask on the deserted benches of the gardens. Rose petals strew the paved paths. One’s footsteps echo in the gorgeous patios, whose walls have witnessed many a scene of pomp, tragedy, and pathos. The spell of the past holds one; and before the imagination troops a long procession of illustrious sovereigns, courtiers, counsellors, and menials.”{48}

The Alcazar, as we have said, at the time of the reconquest covered a much larger space than at present; and its area was even greater in the days of Pedro I. Its strength as a fortress may be gauged by a glance at the remaining walls, adjacent to the principal entrance. In the Plaza de Santo Tomas is an octagonal, one-storeyed tower, called the Torre de Abdalasis, which once formed part of the building, and is said to have been the spot on which St Ferdinand hoisted his flag on the fall of Seville. To enter the palace we pass across the Plaza del Triunfo and enter the Patio de las Banderas, so called either because a flag was hoisted here when the royal family were in residence or on account of the trophy displayed over one of the arches, composed of the Arms of Spain with supporting flags. From this court a colonnade called the Apeadero leads to the Patio de la Monteria. It was built, as an inscription over the portal records, by Philip III. in 1607, and restored and devoted to the purposes of an armoury by the fifth sovereign of that name in 1729. The Patio de la Monteria derives its name from the Royal Lifeguards, the Monteros de Espinosa, having their quarters here. These courts, with the commonplace private houses which surround them, occupy the site of the old Moorish palace of the Almo{49}hades. Some of the houses exhibit vestiges of fine Musulman work. The house No. 3 of the Patio de las Banderas formed part, in the opinion of Gestoso y Perez, of the Stucco Palace (Palacio del Yeso) mentioned by Ayala as having been built by Pedro I. That potentate, it is worthy of remark, was accustomed to administer justice, tempered with ferocity, after the oriental fashion, seated on a stone bench in a corner of this patio. The room in which the Almohade governors presided over their tribunals still exists. It is surrounded by houses, and is entered from the Patio de la Monteria. Contreras sees in this hall (the Sala de Justicia) the traces of a work anterior to the ninth century. It was, however, restored by Pedro. It is square, and measures nine metres across. The ceiling is of stucco and adorned with stars, wreaths, and a painted frieze. Inscriptions in beautiful Cufic characters constitute the principal decoration of the apartment. Round the four walls runs a tastefully worked stucco frieze, interrupted by several right-angled apertures. These were once covered, in the opinion of Herr Schmidt, by screens of plaster, which kept out the sun’s heat but admitted the light; or, according to Gestoso y Perez, by tapestries “which must have made the hall appear a miracle of wealth and{50} splendour.” Thanks to its isolation, the Sala de Justicia escaped the “restoration” effected in the middle of the nineteenth century by order of the Duc de Montpensier.

It was in this hall (often overlooked by visitors) that Don Pedro overheard four judges discussing the division of a bribe they had received. They were beheaded on the spot, and their skulls are still to be seen in the walls of the king’s bed-chamber.

From the Patio de la Monteria we pass into the Patio del Leon. In the fifteenth century, we read, tournaments were often held here. Our attention is at once directed to the superb façade of the main building or Alcazar proper—the palace of Don Pedro. It is a splendid work of art. The columns are of rare marble with elegant Moorish capitals. The portal is imposing, and was rebuilt by Don Pedro, as the legend in curious Gothic characters informs us: ‘The most high, the most noble, the most powerful, and most victorious Don Pedro, King of Castile and Leon, commanded these palaces, these alcazares, and these entrances to be made in the year [of Cæsar] one thousand four hundred and two” (1364). Elsewhere on the façade are the oft-repeated inscriptions in Cufic characters: “There is no conqueror but Allah,”{51} “Glory to our lord, the Sultan,” “Eternal glory to Allah,” “Eternal is the dominion of Allah,” etc.

This gate, in the opinion of Contreras, is of Arabic origin and in the Persian style, after which were built most of the entrances to mosques of the first period. The square opening is often seen in Egypt, and supplanted the more graceful horse-shoe arch. The pilasters are Arabic throughout; but the arch balconies, the Byzantine columns, and Roman capitals are works of Don Pedro’s time.

The palace of the Alcazar forms an irregular oblong. The Patio de las Doncellas or Patio Principal occupies the centre, roughly speaking, and upon it open the various halls and chambers according to the usual Moorish plan. This patio is absurdly named from its being the supposed place in which were collected the hundred damsels said to have been sent by way of annual tribute by Mauregato to the Moors. It is hardly necessary to say that the damsels would have been sent to Cordova, which was the capital of the Khalifate, not to Seville, and that this court was among the restorations of the fourteenth century.

The court is rectangular, and surrounded by a gallery composed of white marble columns in pairs, supporting pointed arches. The soffite (or{52} inner side) of the arch is scalloped or serrated. The central arch in each side is higher and larger than its fellows, and springs from square imposts resting on the twin columns. At each angle of the impost is a graceful little pillar—“a characteristic,” observes Madrazo, “of the Arabic-Grenadine architecture, such as may often be noticed in the magnificent Alhambra of the Alhamares.” Over the arches runs a flowing scroll with Arabic inscriptions, among them being “Glory to our lord the Sultan Don Pedro; may God lend him His aid and render him victorious”, and this very remarkable text, “There is but one God; He is eternal. He was not begotten and does not beget, and He has no equal.” This is evidently an inscription remaining from Musulman days, and spared in their ignorance by the Christian owners of the palace. On the frieze will also be noticed the escutcheons of Don Pedro and the Catholic sovereigns, and the favourite devices of Charles V.—the Pillars of Hercules and motto “Plus Oultre.” Behind the central arches are as many doors with elaborately ornamented arches. On either side of each door is a double window, framed with broad, ornamental bands, with conventional floral designs. Round the inner walls of the arcade runs a high dado of{53} glazed tile mosaic (azulejo), brilliantly coloured and cut with exquisite skill. The combinations and variations of the design repay examination, and will be seen to extend all round the gallery. This decoration was probably executed by Moorish workmen in the time of Pedro I. Finally, above the doors run wide friezes with shuttered windows, through which the light falls on the gleaming mosaic. The ceiling of the gallery dates from the time of Ferdinand and Isabella, but was restored in 1856.

Three recesses in the patio are pointed out as the spots where Don Pedro held his audiences; but Contreras is of opinion that they are the walled-up entrances to former corridors which communicated with the Harem. That apartment probably faced the Salón de los Embajadores.

A wide cornice separates the lower part of the court from the upper gallery. This is composed of balustrades, arches, and columns in white marble of the Ionic order, and was the work of Don Luis de Vega (sixteenth century).

One of the doors opening on to the Patio de las Doncellas gives access to the Salón de los Embajadores (Hall of the Ambassadors), the finest apartment in the Alcazar. Its dazzling splendour is produced by the blending of five distinct styles,{54} the Arabic, Almohade or true Moorish, Gothic, Grenadine or late Moorish, and Renaissance. Measuring about thirty-three feet square, it has four entrances, of which that giving on to the Patio de las Doncellas may be considered the principal. Here we find folding-doors in the Arabic style of extraordinary size and beauty. Each wing is 5.30 metres high by 1.97 broad, and adorned with painted inlaid work, varied by Arabic inscriptions. One of these latter is of great interest. It runs as follows: “Our Lord and Sultan, the exalted and high Don Pedro, King of Castile and Leon (may Allah prosper him and his architect), ordered these doors of carved wood to be made for this apartment (in honour of the noble and fortunate ambassadors), which is a source of joy to the happy city, in which the palaces, the alcazares, and these mansions for my Lord and Master were built, who only showed forth his splendour. The pious and generous Sultan ordered this to be done in the city of Seville with the aid of his intercessor [Saint Peter?] with God. Joy shone in their delightful construction and embellishment. Artificers from Toledo were employed in the work; and this took place in the fortunate year 1404 [1364 A.D.]. Like the evening twilight and the refulgence of{55} the twilight of the aurora is this work. A throne resplendent in brilliant colours and eminence. Praise be to Allah!”

The three remaining portals present graceful round arches, enclosing three lesser arches (forming the actual entrances) of the horse-shoe type. These last are believed, as we have said elsewhere, to be of Abbadite origin. The capitals of their supporting columns are fine examples of the Arab-Byzantine style. Above the horse-shoe arches, and comprised within the outer arch, are three lattices. The whole space within the arch is covered with delicate filigree work.

This hall was once known as the Salón de la Media Naranja (Hall of the Half Orange) from the elegant shaping of its carved wooden ceiling. This rests upon a frieze decorated with the Tower and Lion, and supporting this again are beautiful carved and gilded stalactites or pendants. On the intervening wall spaces are Cufic inscriptions on a blue ground, and female heads painted by sixteenth-century vandals. Then follows another frieze with the devices of Castile and Leon, below which is a row of fifty-six niches, containing the portraits of the kings of Spain from Receswinto the Goth to Philip III. The earliest of these seem to have been painted in the sixteenth century,{56} while the little columns and trefoil windows that separate them may be ascribed to the end of the fourteenth. The series is interrupted by four rectangular spaces, formerly occupied by windows, but now taken up by elegant balconies in wrought iron, the work of Francisco López (1592). The decoration of this magnificent chamber is completed by a high dado of white, blue, and green glazed tiles. It was probably in this hall that Abu Saïd, “the Red King,” was received by Don Pedro prior to his murder.

In an apartment to the right of the Ambassadors’ Hall, a plaster frieze of Arabic origin, showing figures in silhouette, may be noticed; and in a room to the left, other silhouettes, apparently referring to the qualities attributed by his admirers to Pedro I.

On the north side of the Patio de las Doncellas lies the so-called Dormitorio de los Reyes Moros (Bed-chamber of the Moorish Kings). The entrance arch is semicircular, and includes three graceful lattice windows, richly ornamented. On either side of the door is a beautiful double-window with columns dating from the Khalifate. The doors themselves are richly inlaid, and painted with geometrical patterns. The interior of the chamber is adorned, like all other apartments in{57} the Alcazar, with plaster friezes, and is so richly decorated that scarcely a hand’s-breadth (remarks Herr Schmidt) is without ornamentation. To the right of the entrance lies a small apartment known as the Sultan’s Alcove. Opposite the entrance from the patio are three horse-shoe arches belonging to the earliest period of Spanish-Arabic art, leading to an Al-Hami or alcove.

From the Dormitorio we may pass into the quaintly named Patio de las Muñecas, or Puppet’s Court. It is a spot with tragical associations, for here took place the murder of the Master of Santiago, Don Fadrique de Trastamara, by his brother, Don Pedro—a fratricide to be avenged years after by another fratricide at Montiel. The Master, after a campaign in Murcia, had been graciously received by the king, and went to pay his respects to the lovely Maria de Padilla in another part of the palace. It is said that she warned him of his impending fate; perhaps her manner, if not her words, should have aroused him to a sense of his danger; but the soldier prince returned to the royal presence. “Kill the Master of Santiago!” Pedro shouted, so the story goes. The Master’s sword was entangled in his scarf; he was separated from his retinue. He fled to this court, where he was struck down. One of{58} his retainers took refuge in Maria de Padilla’s apartment, where he tried to screen himself by holding the king’s daughter, Doña Beatriz, before his breast. Pedro tore the child away, and despatched the unfortunate man with his own hand.

The Patio de las Muñecas is in the Grenadine style. It has suffered severely at the hands of the restorers of 1833 and 1843. The arches are semicircular and spring from brick pillars, which are supported by marble columns with rich capitals. The arches, which form an arcade round the court, are decorated with fine mosaic and trellis (ajaraca) work. The whole is tastefully painted. The arches vary in size, that looking towards the Ambassadors’ Hall being almost pear-shaped. The columns are of different colours, and the pillars they uphold are inscribed with Cufic characters. The upper part of the patio reveals a not very skilful attempt to imitate the lower.

“The Ambassadors’ Hall as well as the Puppet’s Court,” says Pedro de Madrazo, “are surrounded by elegant saloons, commencing at the principal façade of the Alcazar, running round the north-west angle of the building, adjoining the galleries of the gardens del Principe, de la Gruta, and de la Danza, and terminating at the south-eastern angle of the Patio de las Doncellas. Here is now the{59} chapel, and there it is believed that the luxurious apartment of the Caracol (inhabited by Maria de Padilla) stood. This part was, without doubt, that which was called the Palacio del Yeso, or Stucco Palace, on account of the plaster decorations in the fashion of Granada; but in which of these rooms Don Pedro was playing draughts when the Master of Santiago appeared before him, it is impossible to say with certainty.”

The Salón del Principe occupies the upper floor of the chief façade, and receives light through the beautiful ajimices or twin-windows so noticeable from without. This spacious hall is divided into three compartments, each of which has a fine ceiling. Two have been restored, but the third was the work of Juan de Simancas in the year 1543. The scheme of decoration is Moorish. The columns in this hall and the adjoinng apartments are of marble, with rich capitals. According to Zurita (quoted by Madrazo), these columns came from the royal palace at Valencia, after the defeat of Pedro of Aragon by the King of Castile.

The oratory was built by order of Ferdinand and Isabella in 1504. It contains an admirable retablo in blue glazed tiles—probably the finest work of the kind in Spain—designed by an Italian, Francesco Niculoso. The centre-piece represents{60} the Visitation. It is believed that some parts of the work were drawn by Pedro Millán, a sculptor of Seville.

The oratory is on the upper floor of the palace. On the same storey is the Comedor, or dining-hall, a long, narrow room with a fine fifteenth-century ceiling, and good tapestries on the walls. A more interesting apartment is the bed-chamber of Don Pedro, which has a good carved roof and dados of azulejos and stucco. Over the door four heads may be seen painted. They represent the skulls of the corrupt judges on whom the unjust king executed summary justice. The decoration of this chamber is of the sixteenth century.

The royal apartments on this floor contain several important works of art. In the room of the Infantes is a portrait of Maria Luisa by Goya. The Salón Azul (Blue Room), so-called from the colour of its tapestries, contains some fine pastel paintings by Muraton, and some notable miniatures on ivory. The portraits of the family of Isabel II. by Bartolomé López are worthy of inspection.

Returning to the ground floor, we enter the spacious Salón de Carlos V., occupying one side of the Patio de las Doncellas. Here, it is asserted, St Ferdinand died; but it is more probable that{61} he expired in the old Moorish Alcazar. The fine ceiling, decorated with the heads of warriors and ladies, was built by the Emperor after whom the hall is named. The stucco and the work are very beautiful.

An uninteresting apartment was erected by Ferdinand VI. over the famous Baths of Maria de Padilla, which are approached through an arched entrance, and, surrounded by thick walls, have more the appearance of a dungeon than of a resort of Love and Beauty. The pool still remains where the lovely favourite bathed her fair limbs. In her time it had no other roof than the blue sky of Andalusia, and no further protection from prying eyes than that afforded by the orange and lemon trees. At Pedro’s court it was esteemed a mark of gallantry and loyalty to drink the waters of the bath, after Maria had performed her ablutions. Observing that one of his knights refrained from this act of homage, the king questioned him and elicited the reply, “I dare not drink of the water, lest, having tasted the sauce, I should covet the partridge.” These baths were no doubt used by the ladies of the harem in Moorish days.

The gardens of the Alcazar form a delicious pleasaunce, where the orange and the citron diffuse their fragrance, and fairy-like fountains spring up{62} suddenly beneath the unwary passenger’s feet, sprinkling him with a cooling and perhaps not unwelcome dew. But this paradise has its serpent, and that is the truculent shade of the cruel king, which for ever seems to haunt the Alcazar. Here Pedro prowled one day, when four candidates for the office of judge presented themselves before him. To test their fitness for the post, the king pointed to an orange floating on the surface of a pool close by. He asked each of the lawyers in succession what the floating object was. The three first replied without consideration, “An orange, sire.” But the fourth drew the fruit from the water with his staff, glanced at it, and replied with absolute accuracy, “Half an orange, sire.” He was appointed to the vacant magistracy.

Before leaving the Alcazar, we will briefly summarise the history of its transformations and reconstructions. As we have seen, the palace generally may be considered the work of Don Pedro. In the reign of Juan II., the Salón de los Embajadores was enriched with its fine cupola. A tablet, discovered in 1843, testifies that the architect was Don Diego Roiz, and that the artisans employed in the work were made freemen of the city.

Various parts of the building were built or re{63}constructed by order of Ferdinand and Isabella. The architects were for the most part Christianised Moors, among whom are mentioned Maestre Mohammed Agudo (1479), Juan Fernandez (1479), Diego Fernandez (1496), and Francisco Fernandez. The latter was appointed Master of the Alcazar in 1502, and previous to his adoption of Catholicism was named Hamet Kubeji. According to Gestoso y Perez, a surprising number of artificers and craftsmen were engaged about the Alcazar at this time, a powerful inducement being exemption from taxes and military service. The names of Juan and Francisco de Limpias (1479-1540) have been preserved among the carpenters; and Diego Sanchez (1437), Alfonso Ruiz (1479), and the two Sanchez de Castro (1500), among the painters.

Several improvements were carried out under Charles V. and Philip II., and a great deal of restoration was unfortunately necessitated by the fires which seemed to break out with increasing frequency during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Still more disastrous was the effect of the great earthquake of 1755. Then began the reign of the vandal, which did more damage to the palace than time, fire, and earthquake combined.

In 1762, the minister Wall ordered the Alcazar to be repaired in “the modern manner.” The{64} ceilings which had been destroyed by fire were replaced by others much too low, and valuable arabesques were recklessly sacrificed. In 1805, some director with a genius for transmogrification whitewashed the fine stucco work in the Salon del Principe, and altered the main entrance. He also substituted a plaster ceiling for the bowl-shaped Arab roofing, and made strenuous efforts to impair the beauty of the Ambassadors’ Hall. In 1833 a reaction took place. Don Joaquin Cortes and Señor Raso effected an artistic and sympathetic restoration both of the Prince’s Hall and the Patio de las Muñecas. A more serious restoration was begun in 1842, at the instance of the administrator, Don Domingo de Alcega. The artist Becquer contributed materially to the success of the work. In the ’fifties, the task of replacing and restoring the stucco ornamentation was completed; and under Isabel II. the thirty-six arches of the Patio de las Doncellas were restored. Since that date the reconstructions have not always displayed good taste; but the revival of interest in her ancient monuments which has taken place in Spain of late years encourages us to hope, at least, that the appalling blunders of the early nineteenth century will never be repeated.

After the Alcazar, the most noteworthy monu{65}ment in Seville, dating from the reign of Don Pedro, is the church of Omnium Sanctorum. This edifice occupies the site of a Roman temple, and was built by the Cruel King in 1356. It exhibits a very happy combination of the Moorish and Gothic styles. It is entered by three ogival doors, and is divided into three naves. To the left of the façade is a graceful tower, the first storey of which is Moorish, ornamented somewhat after the style of the Giralda. On one of the doors is a shield bearing the arms of Portugal, which, tradition says, commemorates the pious generosity of Diniz, king of that country, when he visited Alfonso the Wise. If the Sevillians have writ their annals true, this goes to prove that an earlier structure than the present must have existed here. This, by the way, was the parish church of Rioja the poet.

San Lorenzo exhibits the fusion of the contending styles in an interesting fashion. It has five naves; and the horseshoe windows in its tower were converted into ogives at the time of its adaptation to the Christian cult. The arcades of the naves are ogival in the middle, and become by degrees semi-circular towards the extremities as the roof becomes lower. This church contains {66}the miraculous picture of Nuestra Señora de Rocamadour. Rocamadour, in southern France, was a celebrated shrine of pilgrims in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries.

Several other churches in Seville date from this epoch, and present, to a greater or less extent, evidences of the conflict between the Moorish and Gothic styles. In addition to those mentioned, Madrazo names the following: Santa Marina, San Ildefonso, San Vicente, San Julián, San Esteban, Santa Catalina, San Andrés, San Miguel, San Nicolas, San Martin, San Gil, Santa Lucia, San Pedro, and San Isidoro. When a mosque was converted into a Christian church, the same authority remarks, the horseshoe arch was pointed, bells were placed in the minaret, and the orientation was altered from north to south, to east to west. The five last-named churches were erected in the thirteenth century. Santa Maria de las Nieves was, until the year 1391, a synagogue. The decoration is in the plateresco style, and the doors are Gothic. The church contains a painting by Luis de Vargas, and a picture attributed to Murillo.

Nearly in the centre of the city is the Convent of Santa Inés, with a beautiful and tastefully restored chapel. The façade is ancient and graceful. This church contains the remains (said to{67} be uncorrupted) of the foundress, Doña Maria Coronel, one of Don Pedro’s numerous victims. That monarch had conceived a violent passion for her, in the hopes of gratifying which he put her husband to death in the Torre del Oro. The widow, far from yielding to his solicitations, took the veil, and at last, to secure herself from his persecutions, destroyed her beauty by means of vitriol—a species of self-immolation much applauded by the devout in the ages of faith. Her sister, Doña Aldonza, was less successful in resisting the ardent monarch, but died, in the odour of sanctity, Abbess of Santa Inés.

Among the secular buildings erected under the Castilian régime was the existing Tower of Don Fadrique, standing in the gardens of the Convent of the Poor Clares. It was named after the son of St Ferdinand and Beatriz of Swabia, who was put to death by Alfonso el Sabio in 1276. The tower is a fine square structure of Roman workmanship, seemingly, in its lowest floor, and showing a mixture of Moorish and Gothic architecture in its upper half. It formed part of a sumptuous palace erected in 1252, and bestowed in 1289 on the Poor Clares by King Sancho the Brave.

In the Calle Guzman el Bueno is a mansion{68} called the Casa Olea. It contains a fine hall, 8½ metres square, the work of Moorish artisans of the time of Don Pedro. The beautiful inlaid and gilded artesonado ceiling was removed about a century ago; light is admitted through windows of the horseshoe pattern, and the decorations consist of the characteristic stucco-work, latticing, and ajaraca or trellis-work, as fine as any to be seen at the Lindaraja of Granada. The dado of coloured tiles has almost completely disappeared. The Palacio de Montijo, near the church of Omnium Sanctorum, reveals many traces of Mudejar workmanship, as also does a hall in the Casa morisca of the Calle de Abades—not to be confounded with the Casa de Abades, belonging to the Renaissance.

Seville in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries possessed no doubt many palaces and private dwellings of magnificence; but it was in ecclesiastical architecture that the spirit of the age found its truest expression and noblest monuments.{69}


On the eighth day of July in the year 1401, the Dean and Chapter of Seville assembled in the Court of the Elms, and solemnly resolved that, the Cathedral having been practically ruined by recent earthquakes, a new one should be built so splendid that it should have no equal; and that, if the revenue of the See should not prove sufficient for the cost of the undertaking, each one present should contribute from his own stipend as much as might be necessary. Then uprose a zealous prebendary, and cried, “Let us build a church so great that those who come after us may think us mad to have attempted it!”

Such was the greatness of spirit in which the foundation of the existing Cathedral of Seville was undertaken. And the result is worthy of the deep and fervid zeal of those old Catholics of Spain.

The church took one hundred and twenty years to build. Pity it was that the noble-hearted priests who decreed the raising of the fane should never have gazed upon much more than its skeleton! First of all, the mosque-cathedral of{70} Yakub was demolished, only the Giralda and the Patio de los Naranjos, with the northern, eastern, and western gates, being spared. The Royal Chapel was pulled down in 1432, by permission of Juan II. The first stone had been laid in 1402; but, strangely and sadly enough, the name of the architect who traced the plan has not been preserved. Some believe him to have been Alonso Martinez; others, Pero García. Fame, we may well believe, was a prize which the pious builder esteemed but lightly. His reward lay in the greater glorification of his faith.

In 1462, we find Juan Normán directing the works; in 1488, he had passed from the scene and was succeeded by Juan de Hoz. Then came Alonso Ruiz and Alonso Rodriguez. The building was practically finished when, in 1511, the cupola collapsed. In 1519, Juan Gil de Hontañon, the architect of Salamanca Cathedral, completed the reconstruction, and the cathedral may be considered as having been finished, though restorations and remodelling of various parts of the edifice have been going on ever since, and masons are to this day engaged upon the dome.

This magnificent church is pre-eminent for size among the cathedrals of Spain, and ranks third in this respect among the sacred edifices of the{71} world. St Peter’s covers 230,000 square feet, the Mezquita at Cordova 160,000, and the Cathedral of Seville 125,000. Our St Paul’s covers only 84,000 square feet. It follows that this cathedral is the largest of Gothic temples.

So stupendous a monument has naturally attracted comment from distinguished travellers and critics. All have come under the spell of its majesty and massive nobility. Théophile Gautier expressed himself as follows: “The most extravagant and most monstrously prodigious Hindoo pagodas are not to be mentioned in the same century as the Cathedral of Seville. It is a mountain scooped out, a valley turned topsy-turvy; Notre Dame de Paris might walk erect in the middle nave, which is of frightful height; pillars with the girth of towers, and which appear so slender that they make you shudder, rise out of the ground or descend from the vaulted roof, like stalactites in a giant’s grotto.”

The Italian, De Amicis, is less fantastical in his rhapsodies. “At your first entrance, you are bewildered, you feel as if you are wandering in an abyss, and for several moments you can only glance around in this vast spaciousness, to assure yourself that your eyes do not deceive you, that your fancy is playing you no trick; you approach{72} one of the pillars, measure it, and look at those in the distance; though large as towers, they appear so slender that you tremble to think the building is resting upon them. You traverse them with a glance from floor to ceiling, and it seems that you could almost count the moments it would take for the eye to climb them.... In the central aisle, another cathedral, with its cupola and bell-tower, could easily stand.”

Lomas, who is no great admirer of the building, admits that “the first view of the interior is one of the supreme moments of a lifetime. The glory and majesty of it are almost terrible. No other building, surely, is so fortunate as this in what may be called its presence.”

The Cathedral is oblong in shape, and is 414 feet long by 271 feet wide. The nave is 100 feet and the dome 121 feet high.

The principal façade looks west. Here is the principal entrance (Puerta Mayor), and two side doors, the Puertas de San Miguel and del Bautismo. Over the central door is a fine relief, representing the Assumption, by Ricardo Bellver, placed here in 1885. This entrance is elaborately decorated, and adorned with thirty-two statues in niches.

The Puertas San Miguel and del Bautismo are{73} decorated with terra-cotta statues of saints and prelates, the work of Pedro Millan, a fifteenth-century sculptor. Herr Schmidt thinks very highly of these fine performances. Each figure has life and distinct personality, and the treatment of the drapery harmonises wonderfully with the gestures and physiognomy of the wearers. The upper part of the façade is poor, and dates only from 1827.

The southern façade is flanked by sacristies, offices, and courts, above which appear the graceful flying buttresses, gargoyles, and windows, and the majestic dome of the main building. In the middle of this side is a modern entrance, the Puerta de San Cristóbal, added by Casanova in 1887. In the eastern façade are two entrances—the Puertas de las Campanillas and de los Palos—both enriched with fine sculpture by Pedro Millan; the Puerta de los Palos has also a fine Adoration of the Magi by Miguel Florentin (1520).

On the northern side of the Cathedral we find the most important remains of the pre-existing mosque, the Giralda, already described, and the Patio de los Naranjos, with the original fountain at which the Muslims performed their ablutions. The patio is entered from the street by the Puerta del Perdón, a richly decorated horseshoe arch{74} erected by Moorish hands by order of Alfonso XI., to commemorate the victory of the Salado in the year 1340. In the sixteenth century this door was restored and adorned with sculptures. The colossal statues of Saints Peter and Paul, in terra-cotta, are the work of Miguel Florentin. He was among the earliest of the Renaissance sculptors to settle in Spain. By him also is the relief of the Expulsion of the Money-Changers from the Temple, celebrating the substitution of the Lonja or Bourse for this gate as a rendezvous for merchants. The plateresco work was executed by Bartolomé López in 1522. The doors date from Alfonso’s reign, and are faced with bronze plates, on which are Arabic inscriptions.

Close to the Puerta del Perdón is a shrine built in the wall with a Christ on the Cross by Luis de Vargas.

Entering the patio, to the right we find the Sagrario, or parish church, and to the left (reached by a staircase) the Biblioteca Colombina or Chapter Library, founded by Fernando Colon, son of Christopher Columbus. Among the treasures it contains are a manuscript of the great discoverer’s travels, with notes in his own hand; a manuscript tract, written by him in prison, to prove that the existence of America was not contrary to Scripture;{75} the sword of Garcia Perez de Vargas, the great hero of the conquest of Seville, and a very interesting thirteenth-century translation of the Bible.

The northern façade of the Cathedral is entered through three portals, the westernmost of which, the Puerta del Sagrario, is unfinished. The Puerta de los Naranjos and the Puerta del Lagarto lead from the patio. The Puerta del Lagarto retains some traces of its Moorish origin. It is named after the patched and painted stuffed alligator, which has hung here since about the thirteenth century. Here may also be seen a huge elephant’s tusk, and a bridle said to have belonged to the Cid.

Referring more particularly to the exterior of the Cathedral, Caveda says: “The general effect is truly majestic. The open-work parapets which crown the roofs, the graceful lanterns of the eight winding stairs that ascend in the corners to the vaults and galleries, the flying buttresses that spring lightly from aisle to nave, as the jets of a cascade from cliff to cliff, the slender pinnacles that cap them, the proportions of the arms of the transept and of the buttresses supporting the side walls, the large pointed windows that open, one above another, just as the aisles and chapels to which they belong rise over each other, the{76} pointed portals and entrances—all these combine in an almost miraculous manner, although lacking the wealth of detail, the airy grace, and the delicate elegance that characterise the cathedrals of Léon and Burgos.”

Entering the church, the gloom renders it difficult for a time to distinguish its exact configuration. We find it is divided into a nave and four aisles, the former being fifty feet in width. The fine marble floor was laid in the years 1787 to 1795. There is little ornamentation, the interior displaying a noble simplicity, the beautiful effect being produced mainly by the grandeur and symmetry of the vaultings, archings, and pillars. The seventy-four exquisite stained-glass windows, however, form a decorative series of the richest kind. They are, for the most part, the work of northern artists. Micer Cristóbal Aleman (Master Christoph the German) began the first—the first stained-glass window seen in Seville—in 1504, the work being carried on by the German Heinrich, the Flemings Bernardino of Zeeland and Juan Bernardino, Carlos of Bruges, and the great master Arnao of Flanders. The two latter designers are said to have received ninety thousand ducats for their work. The last window was completed in 1662 by a Spaniard named Juan Bautista de Léon.{77} The finest windows are generally considered to be those representing the Ascension, St Mary Magdalen, Lazarus, and the Entry into Jerusalem, by Arnao the Fleming and his brother (1525), and the Resurrection, by Carlos of Bruges (1558).

Passing up the nave, from the Puerta Mayor, we find midway between that entrance and the choir the Tomb of Fernando Colon, son of the great Columbus—“who would have been considered a great man,” says Ford, “had he been the son of a less great father.” The slab is engraved with pictures of the discoverer’s vessels, and the inscription, À Castilla y á León Mundo nuevo dio Colon. At this spot, during Holy Week, is set up the Monumento, an enormous wooden temple in the shape of a Greek cross, in which the Sacrament is enshrined. The structure was made by Antonio Florentin in 1544.

Extending to the middle of the nave is the Coro or Choir, open towards the east or High Altar. The trascoro or choir-screen is faced with marbles, eight columns of red breccia being especially fine. The marble reliefs are fine examples of Genoese work. Over the altar is a fourteenth-century painting of the Madonna, and there is also a picture by Pacheco, the inquisitor, representing St Ferdinand receiving the keys of Seville from{78} “Axataf.” The side walls of the choir accommodate four little chapels, exhibiting a harmonious combination of the Gothic and plateresco styles in translucent alabaster. The Capilla de la Concepcion contains one of the finest examples of statuary in the Cathedral—the Virgin, by Juan Martinez Montañez. Ford says, “This sweet and dignified model was the favourite of his great pupil, Alonso Cano.” The choir was severely injured by the collapse of the dome in 1888. The pillars and baldachino are richly adorned with Gothic figures and stonework. The fine gilt railing is the work of Sancho Muñoz (1519). But the chief glory of the choir is its exquisitely carved stalls, 117 in number, executed between 1475 and 1548, by Nufro Sanchez, Dancart, and Guillen. Moorish influence may be traced in the patterns and the coloured inlaid work of the chairbacks. The handsome lectern bespeaks the skill of Bartolomé Morel. Till the collapse of the dome, the choir was the repository of a number of priceless missals, illuminated in the fifteenth, sixteenth, and seventeenth centuries. The organs are huge but inartistic. As instruments, they are beyond all praise. The older, dating from 1777, was built by Jorge Bosch, the other by Valentin Verdalonga in 1817.{79}

“Between the choir and High Altar is put up during Holy Week the exquisite bronze candlestick, 25 feet high, called El Tenebrario, one of the finest specimens of bronze work of the sixteenth century that exists (it may be seen in the Sacristy), and wrought, in 1562, by Morel; when the Miserere is sung, it is lighted with thirteen candles, twelve of which are put out one after another, indicating that the Apostles deserted Christ; one alone of white wax is left burning, and is a symbol of the Virgin, true to the last. At Easter, also, the Ciro Pascual or fount candle, equal to a large marble pillar, 24 feet high, and weighing seven or eight hundredweight of wax, is placed to the left of the High Altar” (Ford).

Facing the choir stands the isolated Capilla Mayor, containing the High Altar. It is enclosed on three sides by a railing of wrought iron, and on the fourth by a superb Gothic retablo. Schmidt considers this work the quintessence of late Gothic sculpture. The middle parts date from the fifteenth, the outer from the sixteenth century. The ornamentation is of extraordinary delicacy and richness. It is divided into forty-five compartments, each containing subjects from the Scriptures and the lives of the saints in sculpture painted and gilded. It is crowned by a crucifix{80} and the statues of the Virgin and St John. This fine altar-piece was begun by the Fleming Dancart in 1479, and was completed by Spanish artists in 1526.

Behind the altar is the Sacristy, adorned with terra-cotta statues by Miguel Florentin, Juan Marin, and others. Here is kept a reliquary shaped like a triptych, presented to the church by Alfonso the Wise, and called the Alphonsine Tables.

Behind the Capilla Mayor, at the eastern extremity of the nave, is the Capilla Real (Royal Chapel). The building—which, as Ford remarks, is almost a church by itself—was begun by Gainza in 1514, and finished in 1566 by his successors, Fernan Ruiz, Diaz de Palacios, and Maeda. The chapel is of the Renaissance style, and has a lofty dome. There is a handsome frieze showing the figures of children carrying shields and lances. The chapel is divided by light pillars into seven compartments, of which the midmost is occupied by the altar of the Virgin de los Reyes. This image was the gift of St Louis of France to St Ferdinand. “It is of great archæological interest,” says Ford; “it is made like a movable lay-figure; the hair is of spun gold, and the shoes are like those used in the thirteenth{81} century, ornamented with the lilies of France and the word “Amor.” In 1873, the fine gold crown belonging to this image [a sixteenth-century work] was stolen. This image is seated on a silver throne, thirteenth-century work, embossed with the arms of Castile and Leon.” The body of St Ferdinand, remarkably well preserved, is contained in a silver urn, placed on the original sepulchre, which is engraved with epitaphs in Latin, Spanish, Hebrew, and Arabic. In the vault beneath is the ivory figure of the Virgin de las Batallas, which the king always carried with him on his campaigns. It is a fine piece of Gothic statuary. Ferdinand’s sword is also preserved in this chapel. Here are the tombs of Alfonso el Sabio, of Beatriz of Swabia, his mother, of Pedro I., Maria de Padilla, and various Infantes. An interesting trophy is the flag of the Polish Legion of the French army, taken by the Spaniards at Bailen. The twelve statues in the entrance to the Capilla Real are after the designs of Peter Kempener; there is a Mater Dolorosa by Murillo in the sacristy. Some of the later work in this chapel exhibits those fantastic and grotesque features which became common, under the name of Estilo Monstruoso, in Seville.

The entrance to this chapel is flanked by the{82} Capillas de San Pedro and de la Concepcion Grande. In the south aisle is the chapel of the Purification or of the Marshal, containing a remarkable altar-piece by Peter Kempener—exhibiting the portraits of the founder, Marshal Pedro Caballero, and his family. Adjacent is the Sala Capitular, in fine Renaissance style, the work of Gainza and Diego de Riaño (1531). The roof is formed by a fine cupola, supported by Ionic columns, beneath which is some admirable plateresco work, with escutcheons, triglyphs, etc. The hall contains a portrait of St Ferdinand by Francisco Pacheco, the “Conception” and ovals by Murillo, and the “Four Virtues” by Pablo de Céspedes. Beneath the windows are seen reliefs by Velasco, Cabrera, and Vazquez.

The sacristy (Sacristia Mayor) is in the Renaissance style, and lies south of the Sala Capitular. It was built by Gainza in 1535, after designs by Riaño, who had died two years earlier. One of the three altars against the southern wall is adorned by the beautiful “Descent from the Cross” by Peter Kempener (a native of Brussels, called by the Spaniards Campaña), before which Murillo used to stand for hours in rapt contemplation. This priceless work of art was cut in five pieces by the French, with a view to its{83} removal, and has not been very well restored. The sacristy contains also three interesting paintings, dating from the early sixteenth century, by Alejo Fernandez; and the “San Leandro” and “San Isidore” of Murillo.

In this chamber is kept the treasury of the Cathedral. In it might be included the superb silver monstrance by Juan de Arfe (1580-87). It is twelve feet high, and richly adorned with columns, reliefs, and statuettes. The treasury likewise contains another monstrance, studded with 1200 jewels; a rock-crystal cup, said to have belonged to St Ferdinand; and the keys presented to that sovereign on the surrender of the city. That given by the Jews is of iron gilt, with the words, Melech hammelakim giphthohh Melek kolhaaretz gabo (the King of kings will open, the King of all the earth will enter); the other key is of silver gilt and was surrendered by Sakkáf. The inscription upon it is in Arabic, and reads, May Allah render eternal the dominion of Islam in this city.

Proceeding along the south aisle, towards the main entrance, we first reach the Capilla de San Andrés, the burying-place of the ancient family of Guzman. Behind the chapel of Nuestra Señora de las Dolores is the fine Sacristia de los Calices.{84} It is the work of those who built the Sacristia Mayor. It contains several fine paintings—the Saints Justa and Rufina (patrons of Seville) by Goya (among his finest works), the “Angel de la Guarda” and the “St Dorothy” of Murillo, the “Death of a Saint” by Zurbarán, the “Trinity of Theotocopuli” (El Greco), a triptych by Morales, and “The Death of the Virgin”—an old German picture. This crucifix over the altar is one of the most admirable productions of Montañez.

The next chapel (de la Santa Cruz) is adorned by a fine “Descent from the Cross” by Fernandez de Guadelupe (1527). The Puerta de la Lonja has a fresco, painted in 1584, of “St Christopher carrying the Infant Jesus across a River.” A representation of this saint is to be found in nearly all Spanish cathedrals, owing to a curious superstition that to look upon it secures the beholder for the rest of that day from an evil death. This fresco, which measures thirty-two feet high, is opposite the “Capilla de la Gamba” (or, of the leg—of Adam). Here we find “La Generacion”—Luis de Vargas’s masterpiece. “The picture,” says Herr Schmidt, “is wholly in the Italian style, and one of the best examples of this phase of the Spanish Renaissance.”

The large chapel of the Antigua contains the{85} fine tomb of Archbishop Mendoza, by Miguel Florentin, erected in 1509. Here is also a very ancient mural painting, after the Byzantine style, of the “Madonna and Child,” which was placed here in 1578, and is of unknown and rather mysterious origin. The retablo is distinguished by marble statues in the baroque style by Pedro Duque Cornejo. The small sacristy behind this chapel contains pictures by Zurbarán, Morales, and others.

The Capilla de San Hermenegildo has a good statue of the saint by Montañez, and a fine sepulchral monument to Archbishop Juan de Cervantes (1453), by Lorenzo Mercadante de Bretaña, the master of Nufro Sanchez. The Capilla de San José contains “The Espousals of the Virgin” by Valdés Leal, a “Nativity of Christ” by Antolinez, and an inferior retablo (“The Massacre of the Innocents”). The Capilla de Santa Ana possesses a Gothic retablo, dating from about 1450, and divided into fourteen sections. It comes from the old Mosque-Cathedral. The lower part of the work, illustrating the life of St Anne, dates from 1504, the artists having been Hernandez and Barbara Marmolejo. From beneath the tribune a staircase leads to the Archives, which escaped demolition at the hands of the French, through having been sent to Cadiz. The{86} last chapel in the south aisle (San Laureano) is dedicated to a saint, who, like St Denis of France, having been decapitated, performed the unusual feat of walking away with his head under his arm. Here is the tomb of Archbishop de Ejea, who died in 1417.

On the west side of the Cathedral are five small chapels. The Nacimiento chapel contains an admirable “Nativity with the Four Evangelists” by Luis de Vargas, and a “Virgin and St Anne” by Morales. To the right of the Puerta Mayor is the altar of Nuestra Señora del Consuelo, with a “Holy Family,” the masterpiece of Alonso Miguel de Tobar (1678-1738), esteemed the ablest of Murillo’s pupils. Facing this is the little altar of Santo Angel, with a “Guardian Angel” by Murillo. The altar of the Visitation has a good retablo by Pedro Villegas de Marmolejo (1502-1569), and a statue of St Jerome by his namesake, Geronimo Hernandez.

Near the north-western corner of the church the Puerta del Sagrario leads into the Sagrario or Parish Church. This was built between 1618 and 1662 in the Baroque style by Miguel Zumarraga and Fernandez de Iglesias. The width of the single arch of which the roof consists is believed to endanger the safety of the edifice. The rich{87} statues that adorn the interior are by Dayne and Jose de Arce. There is a notable retablo by Pedro Roldan which came from a Franciscan convent now suppressed. The wall of the sacristy is faced with beautiful azulejos of the Arabian period, and in one of the side-chapels is a noteworthy statue of the Virgin by Montañez. In the vault beneath this impressive church the Archbishops of Seville are buried.

Returning to the Cathedral, we find on the left the Capilla del Bautisterio or of San Antonio. It is famous for one of Murillo’s finest works, “St Anthony of Padua’s Vision of the Child Jesus.” This is the picture which was stolen in 1874, conveyed to New York, sold to a Mr Schaus for £50, and by him returned to the ecclesiastical authorities. This chapel is also remarkable for its pila or font, the work of Antonio Florentin, and Giralda windows. Next to it is the Capilla de las Escalas, with two pictures by Luca Giordano, “strong in character, drawing, and colour,” and the sepulchre of Bishop Baltasar del Rio (about 1500); then comes the Capilla de Santiago, with paintings by Valdés Leal and Juan de las Roelas, a stained-glass window with the richest tones, and the tomb of Archbishop Gonzalo de Mena (1401); and the Capilla de San Francisco, with another fine{88} window, and an ambitious “Apotheosis of St Francis” by Herrera el Mozo.

Separated from this chapel by the Puerta de los Naranjos is the Capilla de la Visitacion (or Doncellas). The Puerta is furnished with two altars, one, the Altar de la Asunción, the other, the Virgen de Belén. The former has a painting by Carlo Maratta, the latter a “Virgin and Child” by Alonso Cano. The Capilla de los Evangelistas has an altar-piece in nine parts by Hernando de Sturmio (1555), which shows us the Giralda as it was before the present upper part had been added. Crossing before the Puerta Lagarto we reach the little chapel of Nuestra Señora del Pilar, with a notable “Madonna and Child” by Pedro Millan. The altar-piece of the Capilla de San Pedro, between this chapel and the Capilla Real, has paintings by Zurbarán, hardly distinguishable in the dim light. On the other side of the Capilla Real is the Chapel of la Concepcion Grande, containing pictures relating to the Immaculate Conception, and a crucifix attributed to Alonso Cano. Here is also a fine modern monument to Cardinal Cienfuegos.{89}


Close to the Church of San Marcos is the Convent of Santa Paula with a chapel dating from about 1475. The house, which is of the religious of St Augustine, was founded by Doña Ana de Santillan and the Portuguese Donha Isabel Henriquez, Marqueza de Montemayor. This illustrious lady and her consort, Dom João, Constable of Portugal, are entombed in the Capilla Mayor in separate niches. The portal of this church is one of the richest in Europe. It is magnificently decorated with white and blue azulejos, over the arch being seven medallions representing the birth of Christ and the life of St Paul, encircled with garlands of flowers and fruit, and the figures white on a blue ground. In the tympanum of the arch are displayed the Arms of Spain in white marble on a field of blue tiles, supported by an eagle, and flanked by the escutcheons of the Catholic sovereigns. The azulejo work was jointly executed by Francesco Niculoso of Pisa and Pedro Millan. The interior of the church is in the six{90}teenth-century style, and, except for the tombs of the Marqueses de Montemayor, not specially interesting.

In 1472 Maese Rodrigo founded a college, which afterwards became the seat of the University of Seville, and is now a seminary. Attached to it is a chapel built in the first years of the sixteenth century. It is a fine example of the late Gothic style. The retablo exhibits good painting and carving by unknown artists. The front of the altar displays fine specimens of Andalusian ceramic art. “The students of the seminary,” says Ford, “wear a scarf of brilliant scarlet upon a black gown.”

The most important monument of this period in Seville is the Casa Pilatos. It illustrates the fusion of the Moorish and Renaissance styles, almost to the effacement of the former. In the architecture of this period we usually find an Arabic groundwork nearly obscured by ornamentation of the newer style. In the schemes of decoration the conventional floral designs and geometrical patterns remain, while the inscriptions, which figured so largely in earlier work, disappear. The stucco and azulejos no longer cover the whole walls, and the windows and doors become larger and less graceful. As Herr{91} Schmidt remarks, effect was no longer sought for in the innately elegant but in bold, monumental compositions.

Mr Digby Wyatt (“An Architect’s Note-Book in Spain”) indicates as the two special points of architectural value possessed by the Casa de Pilatos, “the entirely moresque character of the stucco-work at a comparatively late date, and the profuse use of azulejos or coloured tiles. It is ... in and about the splendid staircase that this charming tile lining, of the use of which we have here of very late years commenced a very satisfactory revival, asserts its value as a beautiful mode of introducing clean and permanent polychromatic decoration.”

The history of this beautiful building is of singular interest. Its erection was begun in 1500 by the adelantado (governor), Don Per Enriquez, continued by his son, Don Fadrique Enriquez de Ribera, first Marqués de Tarifa, after his return from a two years’ pilgrimage in the Holy Land, and finished by Don Per Afan, first Duque de Alcalá, and sometime Viceroy of Naples, in 1533. Authorities differ whether it received its name from its having been modelled on the House of Pilate, seen by Don Fadrique, or from the relics presented to the Duque de Alcalá by Pope Pius V. The ex-Viceroy was a liberal patron of the arts.{92} He enriched his house with priceless works of art and a fine library—since removed to Madrid. He played the part of Mæcenas to the Varros of his generation. Here the wits, the savants, and the virtuosi of Spain were made welcome, and here they met together in a noble coterie. Among the frequenters of the house may be named Pacheco the painter, Céspedes, the Herreras, Góngora the poet, Jauregui, Baltasar de Alcazár, Rioja, Juan de Arguizo, and (probably) Cervantes. Herr Schmidt tells us that Seville did not stand alone among the cities of Spain in boasting such a rallying-point for genius: “In Guadalajara, the palace of the Mendozas, in Alba de Tormes and Abadia, the castles of the Duque de Alba, in Madrid, the arts were treasured by Antonio Perez; in Zaragoza by the Duque de Villahermosa, in Plasencia by Don Luis de Avila, in Burgos by the Velascos. These and other families in Spain followed the example set by the Medici in Italy.”

The ground-plan of the Casa de Pilatos is Moorish, with an inner court, two storeys, guest-chambers, and high outer walls surrounding a garden. The exterior is plain and dignified. The portal is of marble, and over the arch is the text, “Nisi Dominus ædificaverit domum, in vanum laboraverunt qui ædificant eam,” etc. To the left{93} of the door is a jasper cross fixed in the wall. In October 1521, the Marqués de Tarifa returned from the Holy Land, and having traversed the path trodden by Christ on His way from Pilate’s house to Calvary, he placed this cross on the wall and counted thence the fourteen stations of the cross. The last fortuitously coincided with the Cruz del Campo, raised near the Caños de Carmona, in the year 1482.

The central patio is markedly Moorish in character, and is encircled with arcades of extraordinary symmetry and beauty. Pedro de Madrazo calls attention to the harmonious variety and irregularity of the arches and windows, comparing the effect thus produced to the admired disorder of the forest and plantation. The decoration of the walls and arches bears a general resemblance to that of the Alcazar, but on closer examination the influence of the plateresco, Late Gothic, and Renaissance styles is revealed. The fountain in the middle of the patio is adorned with dolphins and four huge statues belonging to the best period of Roman art. The chapel is in the mixed pointed and Moorish styles. In the vestibule the ajaraca, or trellis-work, the azulejos, and the ajimeces, or twin-windows (now converted into ordinary windows) recall Moorish art; while the{94} ceiling is in the plateresco style. The arch of the chapel is Gothic, and its walls are laid with azulejos and stucco. In the middle of the floor stands a short marble column, a copy of the pillar at which Christ is supposed to have been scourged, preserved at Rome; it was the gift of Pius V.

The room called the Prætorium has a fine coffered ceiling and good tiling. The staircase is magnificent. Its walls are faced with azulejos, and its ceiling is in the cupola or half-orange style of the Salón de los Embajadores. Another room on the upper floor is adorned with paintings by Pacheco, the subject being Dædalus and Icarus. The view from the roof is perhaps the finest in the city.

The Casa de Pilatos, as might be inferred from the character of its founder, is a veritable cabinet of antiques and precious objects, marbles and fragments from Italica figuring largely in the collection.

A notable private residence, dating probably in its foundations from the beginning of the fifteenth century, is the Casa de Abades, sometimes called the Casa de los Pinelos. It passed into the hands of the Genoese family from which it derives its second name, and thence to the Cathedral Chapter (composed of abbés or abades).{95} In the sixteenth century it became the property of the Ribera family, the owners of the Casa de Pilatos. It is described by Madrazo as presenting a fine example of the Sevillian Renaissance style, which would appear to be compounded of all pre-existing styles. Mr Digby Wyatt, on the other hand, thinks the house more Italian than Spanish. But the beautiful patio, the dados of azulejos, and the ajimeces looking on the courtyard are distinctly Andalusian features. There are also traces of Moorish geometrical ornamentation, covered with repeated coats of whitewash.

The Palacio de las Dueñas, more properly the Palace of the Dukes of Alba, and sometimes called Palacio de las Pinedas, is a vast and once splendid mansion, partaking of the mixed style of the two buildings last described. It boasted at one time eleven patios, with nine fountains, and over one hundred marble columns. A fine patio remains, surrounded by a gallery with graceful columns. The staircase, with its vaulted roof, recalls that of the Casa de Pilatos. In the lower part is a chapel of the fifteenth century, which has fared very badly at the hands of restorers or rather demolishers. This palace was for a time the residence of Lord Holland, an ardent admirer of Spanish literature, and the{96} author (1805) of a memoir on Lope de Vega and Guillen de Castro.

Other notable residences of the nobility in Seville are the Casa de Bustos Tavera, and the Palaces of the Dukes of Osuna and Palomares and the Count of Peñaflor. These all date from what may be loosely called Mudejar times.

The Church of the University of Seville is of interest. The university itself was originally a college of the Society of Jesus, and was built in the middle of the sixteenth century, after designs ascribed to Herrera. Madrazo thinks it more likely that these were the work of the Jesuit Bartolomé de Bustamante. The church forms a Latin cross, a spacious half-orange dome covering the transept. The Renaissance style is followed. Here repose the members of the illustrious Ribera family, their remains having been transported hither on the suppression of the Cartuja (Carthusian Monastery). The oldest of the tombs is also that of the oldest Ribera, who died in 1423, aged 105 years. The finest is that of Doña Catalina (died 1505), the work of a Genoese sculptor. Other tombs are those of Don Pedro Henriquez, Diego Gomez de Ribera, Don Perafan de Ribera (1455), and Beatriz Portocarrero (1458). Let into the pavement is{97} a magnificent bronze slab, to the memory of the Duque de Alcalá, the owner of the Casa de Pilatos. Among the sepulchres are those of the founder, Lorenzo Suarez de Figueroa, whose favourite dog is sculptured at his feet, and Benito Arias Montano, a savant who died in 1598. Over the altar are three paintings: the “Holy Family,” the “Adoration of the Magi,” and the “Nativity”; the first by Roelas, the other two by his pupil, Juan de Varela. These, especially the first, are among the finest pictures in the city. The statue of St Ignatius Loyola by Montañez, coloured by Pacheco, is probably the only faithful likeness of the Saint. In this church are also to be seen two admirable works of Alonso Cano, “St John the Baptist” and “St John the Divine.”

The Renaissance made itself felt in Spain during the reign of Charles V., and was productive of the plateresco style. Seville contains two imposing monuments of this type of architecture—the Ayuntamiento (Town Hall) and Lonja (Exchange). The first-named was begun in 1527 by Diego de Riaño, and completed under Felipe II., about forty years later. Madrazo considers the building “somewhat inharmonious through the variety, a little excessive, of its lines, but admirable for the richness of the decoration and for fine and delicate{98} execution—a merit of the first importance in structures of this style, where the sculptor or stone-cutter ranked with the architect.”

The lower and older storey has three façades, all elaborately chased and designed like silversmiths’ work. The central façade, facing the Calle de Génova, bears the statues of Saints Ferdinand, Leandro, and Isidoro—symbolical of the temporal and spiritual power. The right façade is the purest and most regular of the three. The upper storey, belonging to the reign of Felipe II., appears almost plain in comparison with the tower. In the vestibule is a noble Latin inscription relating to justice. The lower Sala Capitular is a magnificent apartment worthy, as Madrazo remarks, of the Senate of a great republic. It is adorned with the statues of the Castilian kings down to Charles V., with a rich frieze designed with genii, masks, and animals, and with appropriate legends. The upper Sala Capitular has a magnificent artesonado ceiling. Over the grand staircase are a fine coffered ceiling and another in the form of a cupola. The archives of the municipality contain several valuable historical documents, and the embroidered banner of St Ferdinand.

The Lonja or Exchange dates from Felipe II.’s{99} reign. The Patio de los Naranjos was formerly frequented by the merchants and brokers of Seville for the transaction of business, and this practice interfering seriously with divine worship in the Cathedral, the Archbishop, Cristobal de Rojas, petitioned Felipe II. to follow the precedent just established by Sir Thomas Gresham and to build an Exchange or Casa de Contratacion. The preparation of the plans was confided to Herrera, and the building, under the direction of Juan de Minjares, was finished in 1598—at precisely the time, as Ford remarks, that the commerce of Seville began to decline. The Lonja in its stern simplicity reflects, like the Escorial, the temper of Felipe II.—a sovereign, unpopular though he may have been, in whom it is impossible not to recognise the elements of greatness. The edifice forms a perfectly regular quadrangle, and the sobriety of the decoration affords a striking contrast to the gorgeous profusion of the Ayuntamiento. The inner court is noble and severe with its gallery of Doric and Ionic columns. The dignity of the whole has been impaired by later additions and restorations. Here are deposited the archives of the Indies (i.e. South America), the documents being arranged in handsome mahogany cases. They have never been{100} thoroughly gone through and examined. The business men of Seville soon abandoned their Exchange, and it is chiefly to be remembered as the seat of Murillo’s Academy of Painters, founded in 1660.

In connection with the American traffic of Seville it should be mentioned that in the village of Castilleja la Cuesta, near the city, is the house where Hernando Cortés died in 1547. The place has been acquired by the Duc de Montpensier, by whom it has been converted into a sort of museum. The Conquistador’s bones rest in the country which, with such intrepidity, he won for the Spanish race.

The Civil Hospital of Seville, otherwise known by the ghastly designation of the Hospital de las Cinco Llagas or del Sangre (of the Five Wounds or of the Blood), was designed in 1540 by Martin Gainza. It is a massive stone edifice of two storeys, the lower Doric and the upper Ionic. In the central patio is the chapel in the form of a Greek cross, the façade exhibiting a tasteful combination of the three Grecian styles. The altarpiece is by Maeda and Alonzo Vazquez. The pictures of saints are by Zurbarán, and the “Apotheosis of St Hermenegild” and the “Descent from the Cross” by Roelas.{101}


About the middle of the seventeenth century there lived at Seville a young gallant, Don Miguel de Mañara by name, whose excesses and escapades horrified even that lax generation. Marriage with the heiress of the Mendozas did not sober him. Of him, at this period of his life, this much good may be said, that he patronised and encouraged Murillo. But one day something happened: quite suddenly the rake changed into a devotee, an ascetic—a saint in the seventeenth-century acceptation of the word. The wine-bibber forswore even chocolate as too tempting a beverage.

What had happened to produce this startling reformation? Accounts vary. Some say that Don Miguel, traversing the streets in insensate rage against some custom-house officials, was suddenly and vividly made conscious of the enormous wickedness of his life. A more picturesque version is the following: Returning from{102} a carousal one night, the Don found himself absolutely unable to discover his house or the way thither. Wandering desperately up and down distressed, and in perplexity of mind, he perceived a funeral cortège approaching. Impelled by irresistible curiosity, he stepped up to the bearers of the bier and asked whose body they were carrying. Came the reply: “The corpse of Don Miguel de Mañara.” The horror-stricken prodigal tore aside the pall, and lo! the face of the dead man was his own. The vision disappeared, and the same instant the Don found himself at the door of his own house. He entered it a changed man.

The church and hospital of La Caridad are the existing fruits of Don Miguel’s conversion. As far back as 1578, there had existed at Seville a confraternity, the objects of which were to assist condemned criminals at their last moments and to provide them with Christian burial. To this association the reformed rake turned his attention. He converted the chapel into a hospital for the sick, the poor, and the pilgrims of all nations, and liberally endowed it out of his ample resources.

The edifice is in the decadent Greco-Roman style, and was designed by Bernardo Simón de{103} Pereda. The Baroque façade is adorned with five large blue faïence designs on a white ground, the subjects being Faith, Hope, and Charity, St James, and St George. Tradition has it that these were made after drawings by Murillo at the azulejo factory of Triana. The church hardly appears to us to warrant the description “one of the most elegant in Seville,” applied to it by Sir W. Stirling-Maxwell. Under the High Altar is buried the founder, Don Miguel. His own wish was to be buried at the entrance to the church, with the epitaph: Aqui yacen los huesos y cenizas del peor hombre que ha habido en el mundo (Here lie the bones and ashes of the worst man that ever lived in this world). His sword, and his portrait painted by Valdés Leal, are preserved in the Hospital.

As a museum of Spanish art, La Caridad possesses great importance. The altarpiece, “The Descent from the Cross,” is the masterpiece of Pedro Roldan. The two paintings near the entrance by Juan de Valdés Leal (1630-1691) are regarded by Herr Schmidt as entitling that artist to rank as one of the greatest masters of realism of any age. This opinion is not shared by a recent writer (C. Gasquoine Hartley), who considers the pictures theatrical, though the exe{104}cution exhibits a certain power. “In one of them a hand holds a pair of scales, in which the sins of the world—represented by bats, peacocks, serpents, and other objects—are weighed against the emblems of Christ’s Passion; in the other, which is the finer composition, Death, with a coffin under one arm, is about to extinguish a taper, which lights a table spread with crowns, jewels, and all the gewgaws of earthly pomp. The words ‘In Ictu Oculi’ circle the gleaming light of the taper, while upon the ground rests an open coffin, dimly revealing the corpse within.” Murillo said this picture had to be looked at with the nostrils closed. For the two paintings Valdés received 5740 reals.

Of the eleven pictures painted by Murillo for this church, only six remain, the others having been carried off by the French. The subjects are “Moses striking the Rock,” the “Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes,” the “Charity of San Juan de Dios,” the “Annunciation,” the “Infant Jesus,” and “St John.” The first picture, depicting, as it does, the terrible thirst experienced by the Israelites, is known as La Sed (Thirst). Some critics think this is one of the finest of the master’s productions. As is usual in his compositions, the figures are all those of ordinary Sevillian types.{105} “The personality of Christ in the ‘Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes,’ says C. Gasquoine Hartley, “lacks the force of the ancient prophet, and the work as a whole is inferior to its companion picture.” The “Charity of San Juan de Dios”—representing the Saint carrying a beggar with the help of an angel—is the best and most characteristic of the six paintings. The “Infant Jesus” and the “St John” are also very fine. For the “San Juan de Dios” and the “St Elizabeth of Hungary”—El Tiñoso—(now at Madrid) together, Murillo was paid 18,840 reals; for the Moses, 13,300 reals; and for the “Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes,” 15,973 reals.

The last building which may be said to rank as an architectural monument erected in Seville is the Palacio de San Telmo, now the residence of the Duc de Montpensier. In the year 1682 the Naval School of San Telmo was founded on the site of the former palace of the Bishops of Morocco and the tribunal of the Holy Office. The present edifice, begun, after plans by Antonio Rodriguez, in 1734, was not completed till 1796. The palace adjoins the beautiful gardens of the Delicias. The façade is exceedingly ornate, the decoration being in the Plateresco style. The general effect is pleasing, but critics have been{106} unsparing in their denunciations of the structure. It certainly reflects the debasing influence of the architect Jose Churriguera (1665-1725), who has given his name (Churrigueresque) to one of the most tawdry and tasteless styles of architecture.

The Archiepiscopal Palace, adjacent to the Cathedral, is also in the bad style of the later seventeenth century. The interior, however, is worth visiting for the sake of the noble marble staircase, one of the finest in the city. Here are three paintings by Alejo Fernandez, an early seventeenth-century artist, whom Lord Leighton considered “the most conspicuous among the Gothic painters.”

The Fabrica de Tabacos is a vast building completed in 1757. Apart from its size, it possesses no architectural interest, and though a favourite showplace for tourists, does not come within the scope of a work of this character.{107}



Albert F. Calvert and C. Gasquoine Hartley

In Seville, perhaps to a greater extent than in any city, even in Spain, the country of passionate individualism, art is the reflection of the life and temper of the people; and to understand Seville we must know her painters. As we look at the pictures of the Spanish primitives, at the emphatic canvases of Juan de las Roelas and Herrera, for instance; at the realism of Zubarán, or, still more, at the ecstatic visions of Murillo—as we see them in the old Convento de la Merced, now the Museo Provincial, in the Cathedral, or in one or another of the numerous churches in the city, we find the special spirit of Andalusia.

There is one quality that, at a first glance, impresses us in these pictures, so different, and yet all having one aim. It is their profound seriousness. Rarely, indeed, shall we find a picture in which the idea of beauty, whether it is the beauty of colour or the beauty of form, has stood first in the painter’s mind; almost{108} in vain shall we search for any love of landscape, for any passage introduced just for its own sake. For, let it be remembered, in Andalusia art was devotional always. “The chief end of art,” says Pacheco, the master of Velazquez, in his Arte de la Pintura, “is to persuade men to piety and to incline them to God.” Pictures had other purposes to serve than that of beauty. They were painted for the Church to enforce its lessons, they were used as warnings, and as a means of recording the lives of the Saints. In other countries, it is true, painters have spent their strength in religious art, but almost always we can find as well as the sacred, some outside motive, some human love of the subject for itself—for its opportunities of beauty. The intense realism of these Spanish pictures is a thing apart; these Assumptions, Martyrdoms, and Saintly Legends were painted with a vivid sense of the reality of these things by men who felt upon them the hand of God. We know that Luis de Vargas daily humbled himself by scourging and by wearing a hair shirt, and Juan Juanes prepared himself for a new picture by communion and confession. These are two examples chosen out of many. A legend we read of Don Miguel de Mañara, the founder of the Hospital of La{109} Caridad, illustrates this dramatic religious sense of Spain. One day in church Don Miguel saw a beautiful nun, and, forgetful of her habit, made amorous proposals. She did not speak; instead, she turned to look at him; whereupon he saw the side of her face which had been hidden from his eyes: it was eaten away, corrupted by a hideous disease, so that it seemed more horrible than the face of death. It was such scenes as this that the Spanish artists chose to paint. But, indeed, it would be tedious to enumerate the examples which Spain offers of this curious, often, it would seem to us, corrupted sense of the gloom of life, carrying with it as one result the passionate responsibility of art. Always, we feel certain that the Spanish painters felt all that they express.

And this overpowering, if mistaken, understanding of the presence of the divine life gave a profound seriousness to human life. The shadow of earth was felt, not its light; and emotion expressed itself in an intense seriousness, that is over-emphatic too often—always, in fact, when the painter’s idea is not centred in reality. This is the reason why a Spanish painter had to treat a vision as a real scene. We have pictures horrible with the sense of human corruption{110}—such, for instance, are the two gruesome canvases of Valdés Leal, in La Caridad. Again and again is enforced the Catholic lesson of humility, expressing itself in acts of charity to the poor, so essential an idea when this life is held as but a threshold to a divine life. We find a sort of wild delight in martyrdom; a joy that is perfectly sincere in the scourging of the body. All the Spanish pictures tell stories. Was not their aim to translate life?—the life of earth and the, to them, truer life of heaven—and life itself is a story? Their successes in art are due to this, their failures to the sacrifice of all endeavours to this aim; a danger from which, perhaps, no painter except Velazquez quite escaped. He, faultless in balance, in his exquisite statement of life, expresses perfectly the truth his predecessors had tried for, but missed, except indeed now and again, in some unusual triumph over themselves. We find hardly a painter able to free himself from the traditions of his subject. Only Velazquez, controlled by the northern strain that mingles with the passion of his Andalusian temper, was saved quite from this danger of over-statement. And Velazquez does not belong to Seville, though he was born in the southern city on June 5, 1599, in the house, No. 8, Calle de{111} Gorgoja; though the first years of his life were spent there, the time of childhood, the few months of work with the violent Herrera, the five years in the studio of Pacheco, his master; though—a fact of greater import—his temper was Andalusian; and though his early pictures—the bodégones, so familiar to us in England, whither so many have travelled through the fortune of wars—are entirely Spanish in their direct realism. Velazquez worked contemporaneously with the Realistic movement that quickened the arts in Seville in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, but he worked outside it. This explains the silence of his art in Seville. Of the pictures of his youth, painted while he was there, none remain, except one in the Archiepiscopal Palace, “The Virgin delivering the Chasuble to San Ildefonso”; and the authenticity of this picture has been denied until very recently, a fact explained by the bad condition of the canvas. To see the wonderful art of Velazquez you must leave Seville and visit the Museo del Prado at Madrid. Seville is the home of religious art. The habit of her painters was serious; in their profound religious sense, in their adherence, almost brutal at times, to facts, as well as in those interludes of sensuous sweetness that now{112} and again, as, for instance in the art of Murillo, burst out so strangely like an exotic bloom, they reflect the temper of Spain. It is contended sometimes that these pictures in Seville are wanting in dignity, wanting in beauty. But are we not too apt to confine beauty to certain forms of accepted expression? Surely any art that has life; has dignity, has beauty; and no one can deny that life was the inspiration of the Andalusian painters.

We must remember these things if we would understand the pictures in Seville.

But first we find ourselves carried away from the reality and darkness of life back to a happy childhood of art, as we look at the three fourteenth-century frescoes of the Virgin—the “Antigua,” in the chapel named after it in the Cathedral, “Nuestra Señora del Corral” in San Ildefonso, and “Señora Maria de Rocamador” in San Lorenzo—an art when the painter, less conscious of life and of himself, was content to paint beautiful patterns. In these three pictures—all that are left to us—we see the last of Byzantine art in Spain. The figures, with long oval faces all of one type, are placed stiffly against a background of Gothic gold. Look at “Señora Maria de Rocamador,” as she sits holding the{113} Child upon her knees; while two little angels kneel, one upon the left, one on the right. She wears a blue robe, partly covered with a mantle of deep purple, very beautiful with ornaments of gold and bordered with gold braid. A bent coronet around her head stands out against the glowing halo; the background is all of gold woven into a delicate pattern. It is a picture of pure convention in which is no effort to carry the mind beyond what is actually seen; it makes its appeal just as so much decoration. This fresco, as well as the “Antigua” and “Nuestra Señora del Corral,” have been much repainted—the ill-fortune of so many early Spanish works.

But, in the fifteenth century, a new spirit came into art; and with the work of Juan Sánchez de Castro the school of Seville may be said to begin. No knowledge has come down to us of his life; we know only that he was painting in Seville between 1454 and 1516. In his great fresco of “San Cristóbal,” that covers the wall near to the main door in the old Church of San Julian—alas! now spoiled by re-painting and by the subsequent rotting away of the plaster—we find a different, human, almost playful treatment of a sacred story. And for the first time in Seville, {114}we see the special Spanish quality, characteristic of the whole school from this time to the time of Goya, of rendering a scene just as the painter supposed it might have happened. “A child’s dream of a picture,” Mr Arthur Symons has called it. San Cristóbal, many times the size of life, stretching from floor to ceiling, fills the whole picture; he leans upon a pine-staff as he supports the Child Christ upon his shoulders, who holds in his hands a globe of the world upon which the shadow of a cross has fallen. The other figures, the hermit and two pilgrims with staves and cloaks, are quite small; they reach just to the Saint’s knees. And this immense grotesque figure is painted in all seriousness, as a child might picture such a scene. To understand the sincerity of the Spanish painter, we must compare his work with that other fresco of “San Cristóbal,” painted, much later, by Perez de Alesio, which is in the Cathedral. The Italian picture is an attempt to illustrate a popular miracle, perfectly unconvincing; De Castro’s Saint compels us to accept and realise what the painter himself believed in. This is the difference between them.

In the smaller pictures of Sánchez de Castro that remain to us, such, for instance, as the panel of the “Madonna with St Peter and St Jerome,”{115} once in San Julian, but now in the Cathedral, we find him more bound by convention, less himself. We see the immense debt Spanish painting owed to Flemish art. And this influence, always so beneficial, the Northern art being, for reasons of race not possible to state here, the true affinity of Spain in art, remains, with different and more certain knowledge, in the “Pietà” of Juan Nuñez, which still hangs in the Cathedral where it was painted. It meets us again in the fine and interesting “Entombment” by Pedro Sánchez, a painter of whom we know nothing, except that his name is given by Cean Bermudez among the illustrious artists of Spain. The picture may be seen in the collection of Don José López Cepero, at No. 7 Plaza de Alfaro, the house in which Murillo is said to have lived. In all three pictures, and in other work of the same period not possible to mention here, we are face to face with that special Spanish trait, the pre-occupation with grief, that is quite absent from the early fourteenth-century Madonnas, as from the simple child-art of De Castro’s “San Cristóbal.” The shadow of the Inquisition had fallen; art, the handmaid of the Church, could express itself no longer in quaint and beautiful symbols. Instead, it had to force itself to be taken seriously, being occupied wholly{116} with emphatic statements, its aim an insistence on the relation of human life to the divine life.

But the joy of life did not die easily.

Juan Nuñez, once, at least, in those pictures in the Cathedral in which he has painted the archangels Michael and Gabriel quite gaily, their wings bright with peacock’s feathers, returns to the child-humour of De Castro. And Nuñez carries us forward to Alejo Fernandez, the most important painter of this early period, much of whose work remains for us in the Cathedral and in the old churches of Seville.

Go to the suburb of Triana, and in the Church of Santa Ana there is the sweetest Madonna and Child, in which we find a new suggestion in the joy of the Mother in her Babe, a human attitude, making the picture something more than mere illustration. And we notice a delicate care for beauty found very rarely in Seville, perhaps never as perfectly as in the work of this painter. The “Virgen de la Rosa” is the name given to the picture. The Mother sits enthroned under a canopy of gold, in a beautiful robe of elaborate pattern, pale gold on brown. She holds a white rose out to her Child. Typical of Fernandez is this fortunate use of the flower; typical, too, of his new mood of invention is the small{117} landscape of rocky and wooded country that fills the distance. The gracious pose of the Virgin, the beauty in the Child, show an advance in ease upon earlier pictures. But the other figures, four angels who guard the Mother, all posed a little awkwardly, suggest a scheme on whose design the early Byzantine models may have had a forming influence, though the result is different enough. For Fernandez understood the very spirit of the Renaissance; he saw life beautifully and strongly. The attraction of the picture is in its effect of joy, in the charming way in which it forms a pattern of beautiful colour, and in its new sense of humanity that carries us beyond the scene itself.

And there are other pictures of Fernandez in Seville: the great altar-piece in eight sections—one is a copy—that tells the story of Joseph, Mary, and the Child, in the old Church of San Julian; and there is a large “Adoration of the Magi,” the “Birth and Purification of the Virgin,” and the “Reconciliation of St Joachim and St Anne,” all in the Cathedral—the first in the Sacristía de los Cálices, and three others in unfortunate darkness, over the Sacristía altar. And if these larger pictures have not quite the fresh charm of the “Madonna of Santa Ana,” in each one we find a real{118} understanding of beauty, and with it the Spanish gift of presenting the sacred stories as drama, just as the painter felt it all must have happened. Each figure in these scenes has life, has character. No lover of Spanish painting can afford to neglect any picture of Fernandez, and no estimate of the early art of the country can be true that does not include his work. Of his life we know nothing, merely that he came with his brother Juan from Cordova in 1508, called by the Chapter to work in Seville Cathedral. But it matters little that his life is unrecorded, for the work that he has left is his best history.

In these first years of the Sevillian school, when art was sincere and young, many pictures were painted, all strong work, all interesting, in lesser or greater measure, to the student, even if not to the art lover, as showing the growth of a national style. In many cases the names of the artists are unknown; no painter has left much record of himself. These pictures, which may be recognised very readily, are found in the Museo de la Merced, in the Cathedral, and still more in the churches, the true museums of Seville.

But fashion in art changes, and the sixteenth century witnessed the manifestation of a new mood in painting, the advent to Spain of the{119} Italian influences of the Renaissance. This is not the place to speak of the blight which fell upon art. The distinctively Italian schools were only an influence of evil in Spain, and the inauguration of the new manner was the birth of a period of great artistic poverty. The main desire of the sixteenth-century painters was, as it were, to wipe the artistic slate. All pictures painted in the old style were repudiated as barbarous, cast aside as an out-of-date garment. The country became overrun by third-rate imitators of the Italian grand style, of Michael Angelo, of Raphael and his followers. The decorations, as you can still see them, of the Escorial, may be taken as typical of Italian art as it was transplanted into Spain. All national art that was not Italian in its inspiration was looked upon as worthless.

Yet, be it remembered, that the Spanish painters, more perhaps than the painters of any other school, could imitate and absorb the art of others without degenerating wholly into copyists. The temper of the nation was strong. Even now it was not so much a copying of Italian art, rather it was an unfortunate blending of style which took away for a time the dignity and strength which is the beauty of Spanish painting. Thus, Peter van Kempeneer, a Flemish painter, known better in{120} Spain as Pedro Campaña, who, strangely enough, was the first to bring the Italian influence to Seville, was inspired alternately by the Northern and Italian styles; and in such a picture as his famous “Descent from the Cross,” still in the Sacristía Mayor of the Cathedral, with its crude colour and extravagant action, we find him—in an effort, it is said, to imitate Michael Angelo—being more Spanish than the Spaniards. Indeed, this picture, which made such strong appeal to Murillo that he chose to rest beneath it in death, gives us a very curious, left-handed fore-vision, as it were, of the marvellous work of Ribera. In the large altar-piece, of many compartments, of the Capilla del Mariscal in the Cathedral, the first picture painted by Campaña, when, in 1548, he came to Seville, we see him a realist in the portraits of the donors, painted with admirable truth; but in the “Purification of the Virgin,” the scene that fills the lower compartment of the altar, he is Italian and demonstrative—spectacular movement, meaningless gestures, all done for effect.

The Italian influence, the buena manera it was called in Seville, is more insistent in Luis de Vargas, whose painting was contemporary with that of Campaña. He was the first painter of Seville to submit himself wholly to Italy, and most often he{121} was inspired by Raphael. Much of his work has perished; of the once famous frescoes, “his greatest gift to Seville,” nothing remains except a few colour traces upon the Giralda Tower. De Vargas, the pupil probably of Perino del Vagas, brought back as the reward of twenty-eight years of painting in Italy much craft skill; and his work, as we see it in the “Pietà,” in Santa Maria la Blanca, in the earlier “Nativity,” and, even more, in his masterpiece, the popular “La Gamba,” both in the Cathedral, gives us a borrowed art, academic and emotional. Only in portraiture does he say what he has to say for himself. The portrait of Fernando de Contreras, in the Sacristía de los Calices, is a portrait of sincerity and character, in which is the Spanish insistence on detail, unpleasant detail even, as in the ill-shaven cheeks rendered with such exact care. Contrast this portrait with his other pictures, so extravagant, with such futile gesticulation, to understand how a really capable painter lost his sincerity, as just then it was lost in all Spanish painting. In this effort to be Italian, De Vargas’ natural gift of reality, as we see it, for instance, in the “Christ” of Santa Maria la Blanca, or in the peasant boy of the Cathedral “Nativity,” was overclouded, mingled curiously enough with a Raphael{122}esque sweetness. It was not that this painter did not realise the scenes that he depicts—yes, and depicts with passion—do we not know the sincere piety of his life?—but he used to express them an art that was not his own, an art he was temperamentally unfitted to understand.

Contemporary with Campaña and De Vargas, the leaders of the Andalusian Mannerists, worked a band of painters of second, or even third-rate, talent. Francisco Frutet, like Campaña a Flemish painter who had learnt his art in Italy, and who came to Seville about 1548, is typical of these “improvers,” as Pacheco calls them so mistakenly, of the native art. His best work is his Triptych in the Museo, in which again we see the same curious mingling of Flemish and Italian types; the Christ, for instance, recalling the models of Italy, while Simon of Cyrene, who bends beneath the Cross, is nearer to the Gothic figures. Pedro Villegas Marmolejo has more interest. His quiet pleasing pictures—one is in the Cathedral, one in San Pedro—interpret Italian art with more charm, but still without originality.

And Marmolejo leads us quite naturally to Juan de las Roelas, and in Roelas we have at last a Spanish painter who learnt from Italy something more than mere technical imitation. And in spite{123} of a want of concentration—the accustomed insincerity, the result, it would seem, of a too persistent effort to express his art in the art of Venice, in which city he is thought to have painted, perhaps in the studio of some follower of Titian, he does realise his scenes with something of the old intensity. Roelas anticipates Murillo, not altogether unworthily, giving us, with less originality, but with much sweetness, an expression of that mood of religious sensuousness that is one phase of Spanish painting. Seville is the single home of Roelas;[A] here we may see his pictures in the Cathedral, in the Museum, and in many of the churches. His art is unequal in its merit. In his large compositions often there is confusion—“Santiago destroying the Moors at the Battle of Clavijo,” his picture in the Cathedral, is one instance—spaces are left uncared for, the composition is a little awkward, the brush-work is careless, a fault that is common to much of his work. The “Martyrdom of St Andrew,” in the Museum, is perhaps his most original picture. Here Roelas is a realist. And how expressive of life—Spanish life, are all the powerfully contrasted figures that so{124} truly take their part in the scene depicted. In some of his pictures Roelas gives us the brightest visions. Such is “El Transito de San Isidore,” in the parish church of the saint, a picture in which we see in the treatment of Christ and Mary and the child-angels a manner that seems, indeed, to forestall Murillo; such, too, are the “Apotheosis of San Hermenegildo,” and the “Descent of the Holy Spirit,” both in the church of the Hospital of La Sangre. All three pictures are difficult to see: one is hidden behind the altar, the other two hang at a great height in the church where the light is dim. There are good pictures by Roelas in the University, a “Holy Child,” the “Adoration of the Kings,” and the “Presentation of the Child Christ in the Temple”; and in this last picture, with its soft colour and human gaiety, again we are reminded of Murillo. But a work of perhaps more interest, certainly of more strength, is “St Peter freed from Prison by the Angel,” which is hidden in a side-chapel in the Church of San Pedro. Then, how quiet, with a repose uncommon enough in Spain, is his “Virgin and Santa Ana,” in the Museo de la Merced. The figures—the girl Virgin, her mother, and the angels who crowd the space above them—all have the fairness Roelas gives to women; the soft glow of their flesh is beautiful.{125} Look at the cat and dog that play so naturally in the foreground, beside a work-basket, and what a happy “note” is given by the open drawer, which shows the linen and lace within. Certainly this picture is more Italian than Spanish.

As the years passed, and art in Seville grew older, many painters trod in the steps worn by these others. It is not possible, nor is it necessary, to wait to look at their pictures; too often they exaggerate the faults of the masters they copied, and by a slavish repetition of accepted ideas—the inevitable fault of the age—they weakened still further native art. And, when we come to the next century, which gives us Alonso Cano, sculptor, architect, and painter, described admirably by Lord Leighton as “an eclectic with a Spanish accent,” many of whose facile, meaningless pictures may be seen in Seville, to the much inferior work of the younger Herrera, and to the exaggerated over-statements of Juan de Valdés Leal, in whose art Sevillian painting may be said to die, we realise into what degradation pseudo-Italianism had dragged painting.

But there is a reverse side to the picture. The spirit of Spain was too strong to sleep in an art that was borrowed. Already Luis de Morales, a native of Estremadura, known as “the divine,” on account{126} of the exclusively religious character of the subjects he painted, and of the strange intensity with which he impregnated them, had evolved for himself a sincere expression of Spanish art; already Navarrete, the mute painter of Navarre, had broken from conventions, and taken for himself inspiration from the marvellous pictures of Titian which he had seen at the Escorial; already, Theotócopuli, known better as El Greco, was painting with wonderful genius in Toledo, pictures, so new, so personal, that to-day they command the attention of the world. But Seville does not represent these painters.[B]

It has been the fashion, since the tradition was started by Cean Bermudez, to call Herrera el viejo (1576-1656) “the anticipator of the true Spanish school.” Herrera had a studio in Seville, in which worked many painters, and among them Velazquez, Antonio Castillo y{127} Saavedra, and perhaps Alonso Cano; and it seems certain that he owes his position to-day in large measure to this fact; had he not been for a few months the master of Velazquez his impossible art would remain unknown outside Seville. For the truth is Herrera said nothing that Roelas had not already said better.

His temper was Spanish enough, but his work is without originality, if emphatic and personal in a too vehemently Spanish way. Yet it is worth while to see, yes, and to study, each one of his half-dozen pictures. Even in Seville, Herrera’s work is rare; the “Apotheosis of San Hermenegildo,” and the later, more violent “San Basil,” are in the Museum, where, too, are the less known, but much better, portrait-pictures of apostles and saints; while the “Final Judgment,” his most personal work, is still where it was painted in the darkness of the Parroquina of San Bernado. One quality we may grant to Herrera; he did resist the popular Italian influence. These pictures, sensational as they are, with their hot disagreeable colour—“macaroni in tomato sauce” Mr Ricketts aptly terms it—their mannerism, extravagant contortions and splash brush-work, have little apart from this to recommend them. But you will understand better{128} the esteem Herrera has gained if you will compare his work with the paintings of his contemporaries; the conscientious, academic Pacheco, for instance, the last, and, in himself, the most interesting of the Mannerists, or with Murillo’s master, Juan del Castillo, the worst painter of Seville, whose pictures fill with formal tedium so many buildings in the city. This is why Herrera’s pictures claim notice from the student of Andalusian art to-day: they form a link in the unbroken chain of the national pictures.

Now turn to Zurbarán.

You pass at once into a world of realism, a world in which facts, obvious facts, are set forth with a downright passion of statement that for a moment tricks us; we think we have found life, and, instead, we have the outward form, too monotonously literal, and without suggestion. Upon Zurbarán lies the weight of the sadness of Spain. It is something of this that we realise as we see the thirty or forty of his pictures that are in Seville, gathered together for the most part in the Museo de la Merced, where the light is so much better than it is in the Cathedral and in the churches, though there certainly his pictures seem to be more fittingly at home. Each picture is so true to life, and yet without life.{129} Look at his Saints, all are portraits, faces caught in a mirror that seems to sum up the old world of Spain. Contrast these Saints with the Saints of Murillo. What honesty is here; what singular striving to record the truth. Note the gravity and simplicity of the Scriptural scenes; his conception of the Christ; the intensity of the three renderings of the Crucifixion, in which for once Zurbarán finds a subject suited exactly to his art; then mark how the peasants[C] he depicts are almost startling in their outward nearness to life.

Look especially at the Carthusian pictures in the Museum, “San Hugo visiting the Monks in their Refectory,” the “Virgen de las Cuevas,” and “St Bruno conversing with Pope Urban II.” They are typical of Zurbarán’s special gift. In the first of these three pictures, which is the best, the monks clad in the soft white robes of their order are seated around a table at their mid-day meal. The aged Hugo stands in the foreground, attended by a boy-page; he has{130} come to reprove them for dining upon flesh-meat. His purple vestments give a note of colour in contrast with the white frocks of the brothers. But, as is customary with Zurbarán, colour counts for very little, and atmosphere for less, in this picture in which all care is given to formal outline and exact expression. Once only in the “Apotheosis of St Thomas Aquinas,” also in the Museo, does he give us some of that warm colour he should have learnt from Roelas, whose pupil he is said to have been. This is one reason why his figures, so true to the facts of life, do not live. But no one has painted ecclesiastics and monks quite as Zurbarán has done. His sincerity is annoying almost; for he tells us nothing that we could not have seen for ourselves; we are no nearer than a photograph would bring us to the character of these men. Zurbarán was hardly consciously an artist; and with all his sincerity, his vision was ordinary. He was a recorder and not an interpreter of life, and in gaining reality he has just missed truth.

On coming to the work of Murillo it is quite another phase of the religious sentiment of Spain that we see developed: we gain an over-statement of sweetness, not an over-statement of facts. The spirit in which he painted was happier, more{131} trustful, more personal than was that of Zurbarán; he is more Andalusian and less Spanish, and certainly better equipped as a painter.

Murillo forms part of your life while you are in Seville, he is more or less around you everywhere; and though to some of us, perhaps not unjustly, he is a painter we have tried in vain to love, he does express in a special way the very aspect of the southern city he himself loved with such single devotion. This is why we like him so much better in Seville than we are able to do anywhere else. His pictures repeat the full life of Andalusia—its religious emotion, its splendour, its poverty, its stark contrasts, its rich sense of life; and his colours are the same colours that we see in the landscape, warm and deep, the soft, hot light of southern Spain. You don’t visit the Museum, La Caridad, the Cathedral, and the churches to see his pictures as a change of amusement from the streets; you go because they renew the same atmosphere, and offer a reproduction of so much that surrounds you.

No one has ever painted ecstasy with quite the facility of Murillo. And in the Museum, where the Capuchin Series and other famous pictures are gathered, you can learn all that is essential to his art; his happy Saints swim before you in mists{132} of luscious colour; cherubs flutter around as they minister to beggars clad in rags carefully draped; Virgins, garbed in the conventional blue and white, their feet resting upon the crescent moon, vanish into luminous vapour, their robes rustle in the air, and their sun-lighted faces repeat the very complexion of Seville. Murillo had neither the power nor the desire to idealise his models. His Saints—St Francis of Assisi, St Felix of Cantalicio, St Anthony, St Thomas of Villanueva—and how many more? are men such as may be seen to-day in the streets of Seville; all are alike, the name alone differs. His Madonnas are peasants whose emotions are purely human. More perhaps than any painter Murillo’s work is personal—he translated the divine life and made it his own common human life—the fault is that his personality is not interesting. And seeing these pictures, and, even more, his other work—pictures hanging still in the churches for which they were painted, where they seem to share in the pervading religious emotion and to take their part in the life of the building—the “Vision of St Anthony of Padua” in the Baptistery of the Cathedral, for instance, or the great pictures of La Caridad; you will understand how Murillo came to be idolised in Spain; how his pictures held, for a time, the admiration of Europe;{133} and how to-day he has ceased to interest a world that has grown older and seeks, above all, the truth.

Murillo was impelled by a desire for realism. There is much of the spirit and manner of Zurbarán in his early pictures: “San Leandro and San Buenaventura,” two early “Virgins and the Child,” and the “Adoration of the Shepherds,” all in the Museum, are examples. The same careful characterisation meets us in the much later “Last Supper” of Santa Maria la Blanca, his most truthful Scriptural scene. Then his portraits, such as those of SS. Leandro and Isidore in the Sacristia Mayor of the Cathedral, or that of St Dorothy in the Sacristia de los Cálices, are serious studies after nature. Once or twice in his landscapes we find a sincerity that surprises us. But a painter must be judged by the main output of his art. And the truth is that, with a natural gift that certainly was great, added to unusual facility, Murillo’s personality was commonplace. His self-assurance amazes us. His emotion, neither profound nor simple, but always perfectly satisfied, perfectly happy, exactly fitted him to give voice to the common sentiments of his age. He did create a sort of life, but his compositions are the work of his hand rather than of his soul.{134} All his Saints, his Madonnas—pose unthinkingly in the subtly interwoven light he knew so well how to paint, living only in the moment which their conventionalised attitudes perpetuate. You do not realise them as personalities greeting you from the canvas like the intense, painful faces of El Greco, or the wonderful creations of Velazquez; if you remember them at all it is part of a pleasing picture. This is the reason why these religious idylls have lost so much of their meaning; their over-statement of sweetness cloys. Murillo gives us one aspect of Andalusia; it was left for El Greco, Ribera, Velazquez, and Goya to interpret Spain to the world.{135}


Moor and Spaniard have, between them, effaced almost all traces of the ancient Hispalis or Romula, the little Rome; but the sister-city of Italica, early deserted by man, has been dealt not too harshly with by time. Its remains—a Spanish league to the north-west of Seville—still attract the artist and the archæologist. There, where the wretched hamlet of Santi Ponce now stands, was in the dim past the Iberian village of Sancios. Scipio the Elder, after his long and victorious campaign, passed this way, and selected the spot as a place of rest and refreshment for his war-worn veterans. “Relicto utpote pacata regione valido præsidio, Scipio milites omnes vulneribus debiles in unam urbem compulit, quam ab Italia Italicam nominavit,” says Appian. Señor de Madrazo remarks that this must have been the first Latin-speaking town founded outside Italy. It was not at first a municipium, but a place for meeting and council of the Roman citizens. The municipal status it owed to Augustus. Subsequently, its citizens petitioned to be classed as a colony of Rome.{136}

The colony proved not unworthy of the great capital. Hence sprang the illustrious line of the Ælii, and most of the eminent Roman Spaniards who conferred such lustre on the early Empire are believed to have been natives of the place. It is not, therefore, to be wondered at that the citizens should have preferred a nominal dependence on the Mother City to the quasi-independence of a provincial municipality. But Italica never seems to have been a city in the modern sense of the word. Excavations have revealed extremely few remains of private habitations or bazaars. The only vestiges are those of great public monuments—temples, palaces, amphitheatres, baths. The Emperors seem to have delighted to embellish this small town with ornaments quite out of proportion to its size and population, and it is clear that it never was a serious rival to its older neighbour, Hispalis.

Its downfall, like its history, is mysterious. Leovigild occupied it while besieging Seville, which was held by his son, Hermenigild. Later on, the Arabs are said to have demolished it almost completely, and to have carried off numerous statues, columns, and blocks of masonry to serve in the construction and adornment of the neighbouring city. Then Italica disappeared from{137} history. Earthquakes finished the work of ruin, and the scattered stones went to the making of the miserable village of Santi Ponce—a name which some derive from that of San Geroncio, a Bishop of Italica in early times.

The amphitheatre is now all that remains to attest the erstwhile splendour of the darling colony of the Ælii. It is a melancholy and yet a pretty spot, approached through olive plantations. Some of the walls are still standing, and enable us to determine the dimensions, which are stated at 291 feet length and 204 feet breadth. You may still see the Podium or stone platform, whereon the civic dignitaries sate, and the upper tiers appropriated to the populace. You may pass down the vomitoria, through which the spectators streamed, glutted with the sight of blood, and penetrate to the dens and chambers, wherein gladiators and wild beasts were confined before the combat. Italica is more a place to muse in than to explore. The place has long since been rifled of all its treasures. Extensive ruins of what was believed to have been the palace of Trajan existed down till the great earthquake of 1755, and all that was spared were three statues preserved in the Museo Provincial or Picture Gallery.{138}

Close to the ruins is the convent of San Isidoro del Campo, founded in 1301 by Don Alonso Perez de Guzman, as a place of sepulture for him and his family. The establishment was peopled first by the Cistercians, later by the Hermits of St Jerome. The edifice presents the appearance of a fortified abbey of the Middle Ages, though not without traces of Mudejar influence. The church is Gothic, and divided into two naves, united by a transept, and constituting each a distinct church. One of these structures was built by the hero of Tarifa, Guzman the Good, and contains his tomb and that of his wife, together with a fine retablo by Montañes; the other, founded by the hero’s son, Don Juan Alonso Perez de Guzman, contains his tomb, marked by a fine recumbent figure, and that of Doña Urraca Osorio, burnt by order of Pedro the Cruel. In the cloisters of the convent are some mural paintings of the fifteenth century, which though much damaged repay inspection.

With the excursion to Italica the traveller should combine a visit to the Cartuja, more properly called Santa Maria de las Cuevas. It lies close to the suburb of Triana. The monastery was founded in the first decade of the fifteenth century, at the instance of the great Archbishop{139} Gonzalo de Mena, and became the burying-place of the Ribera family, whose magnificent tombs are now to be seen in the University Church. Of the original structure only a little antique chapel remains. The refectory, chapter-hall, and cloisters all date from a restoration effected by the first Marqués de Tarifa in the sixteenth century. The building became, in 1839, the seat of the pottery manufacture of the (then) English firm of Pickman & Co. The establishment has produced some fine porcelain, and is worth inspection by all those interested in the ceramic art. Pottery has been associated from time immemorial with this locality and the adjoining suburb of Triana, and it will be remembered that the patron saints of Seville, Justa and Rufina, were, according to tradition, potters by trade.{141}{140}


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General View of Seville from the Giralda Tower, West Side of the City.

First View.



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General View of Seville from the Giralda Tower, West Side of the City.

Second View.



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General View of Seville from the Giralda Tower, East Side.



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General View of Seville from the Giralda Tower, Central Part of the City.



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General View of Seville from the Giralda Tower, North Side.



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Procession of the Conception of the Virgin passing through the Plaza de San Francisco.



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View of Seville.



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View of Seville.



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View of Seville.



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View of Seville.



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View of Seville.



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View of Seville.



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View of Seville.



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View of Seville.



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Bridge over the Guadalquivir.



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Hercules Avenue.



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The Plaza Nueva.



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View of Triana from the Tower of Gold.



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General View from Triana.



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General View from Triana.



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The Tower of Gold from San Telmo.



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A Street in Seville.



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The Tower of Gold.



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Church of San Marcos, from the Palace of the Dueñas.



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Church of San Marcos.



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Court of the Hotel de Madrid.



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Hospital, with the Mosaics painted by Murillo.



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Portal of the Convent of Santa Paula.



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Church of Santa Catalina.



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Church of Todos Santos.



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The Provincial Museum, with Murillo’s Statue.



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Statue of Murillo.



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General View of the Town Hall.



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The Town Hall, Left Side.



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The Town Hall, Left Side, Detail of the Interior Angle.



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Door of the Town Hall.



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The Town Hall, Detail of the Principal Part.



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General View of the Town Hall.



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The Town Hall, Detail of the Façade.



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The Town Hall, Detail of the Principal Door.



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Window in the Town Hall.



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Principal Façade of the Tobacco Factory.



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The Tobacco Factory.



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Cigar Makers, Seville.



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The “Sevillanas” Dance.



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Sevillian Costumes—A Courtyard.



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General View of the Exchange.



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Court in the Exchange.



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The Aceite Postern and Ancient Ramparts.



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The Roman Walls near the Gate of the Macarena.



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The Roman Amphitheatre of Italica.



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General View of the Palace of San Telmo from the River.



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Principal Portal of the San Telmo Palace.



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Interior of the Hall of Columns in the San Telmo Palace.



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Interior View of the Duke of Montpensier’s Study In San Telmo.



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Various Objects found in the Sepulchres at San Telmo.

(In the Palace of San Telmo.)



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Palms in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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The Sepulchres of the Victims of Don Juan Tenorio in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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The Roman Sepulchres in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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View in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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The Aviary in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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The River in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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The Cocoa Tree and East Side of San Telmo.



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The Zapote, a Tree in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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The Island and River in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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The Yucca, a rare Tree in the Gardens of San Telmo.



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General View of the Hospital de la Sangre.



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Church of the Sagrario, North Side.



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Principal Façade of the Hospital de la Sangre.



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Porch of the Church of the Hospital de la Sangre.



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Bas-relief. Hospital de la Sangre, the Work of Torregiano.



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General View of the Exterior of the Cathedral.



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The Giralda, from the Patio de los Naranjos.



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The Top of the Giralda.



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The Dancing Choir Boys, Seville Cathedral.



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Dancing Boys, Seville Cathedral.



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The Gate of the Archbishop.



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Plaza de San Francisco, with the Giralda and Cathedral.



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Plaza del Triunfo, the Cathedral, and the Exchange, from the Gate of the Lion.



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The Fête.



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Gate of San Miguel in the Cathedral.



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Gate of the Cathedral called de las Campanillas.



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Gate of the Baptist in the Cathedral.



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The Gate of the Lizard in the Cathedral.



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General View of the Cathedral From the Tribune of the Principal Door.



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Principal Sacristy in the Cathedral.



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Principal Entrance to the Cathedral.



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Interior View of the Principal Sacristy in the Cathedral.



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The Gamba Chapel.



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The Cathedral.

The Gamba Chapel and Entrance to that of the Antigua.



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Chapels of the Conception and the Annunciation in the Cathedral.



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The Cathedral.

The Chapel of the Conception.



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The Cathedral.

Detail of the High Altar.



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The Cathedral.

Retablo, or Altar-piece of the High Altar.



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Iron Railings of the Lateral Part of the High Altar.



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The Cathedral.

Wrought Iron Screen in the Choir.



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The Cathedral.

Wrought Iron Screen of the High Altar.



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St Christopher carrying the Child Jesus, by Mateo Perez Alesio, in the Cathedral.].{239}


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San Fernando Square.



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Gardens of the Alcazar.



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General View of the Gardens of the Alcazar.



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View of the Gardens of the Alcazar.



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General View of the Gardens of the Alcazar.



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The Gardens of the Alcazar. Lake and Gallery of Don Pedro I. the Cruel.



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The Gardens of the Alcazar. View of the Gallery of Don Pedro I., the Cruel.



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The Hothouses in the Gardens of the Alcazar.



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Calle de las Vedras in the Gardens of the Alcazar.



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The Gardens of the Alcazar.

Parterre of Doña Maria de Padilla.



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The Alcazar. Baths of Doña Maria de Padilla.



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Magnificent Altar in Faience painted in the 15th Century.

In the Oratory of the Catholic Sovereigns in the Alcazar.



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Town Hall of Seville.

Details of Doors and Balconies.



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Town Hall of Seville. Details.



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Parish Church of San Marcos.



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Various Towers of Seville.



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Details of the Mosaic commonly called El Grande.



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Sculpture and Details of Ancient Churches.



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Architectural Parts, Bas-reliefs, and Ceramic Objects.



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Façade of the Consistorial Houses.



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Entrance to the Alcazar, Seville.



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Principal Façade of the Alcazar.



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Gate of the Principal Entrance, Alcazar.



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Interior of the Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar.



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Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar.



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Interior of the Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar.



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Interior of the Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar.



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Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar.



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Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar.



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Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar.



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Upper Part of the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Court of the Dolls from the Room of the Prince, Alcazar.



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Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Angle in the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Gallery on the Second Storey of the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Upper Part of the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Upper Part of the Court of the Dolls, Alcazar.



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Entrance to the Dormitory of the Moorish Kings, Alcazar.



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Dormitory of the Moorish Kings, Alcazar.



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Front of the Sleeping Saloon of the Moorish Kings, Alcazar.



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Sleeping Saloon of the Moorish Kings, Alcazar.



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Intercolumniation, where Don Fadrique was Assassinated, Alcazar.

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Sultana’s Quarters, Alcazar.



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Room in which King St Ferdinand Died, Alcazar.



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Interior of the Hall of St Ferdinand, Alcazar.



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Front of the Hall of St Ferdinand, Alcazar.



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Gate of the Hall of St Ferdinand, Alcazar.



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Gallery of the Hall of St Ferdinand, Alcazar.



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Throne of Justice, Alcazar.



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Court of the Hundred Virgins, Alcazar.



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Court of the Virgins, Alcazar.



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General View of the Court of the Hundred Virgins, Alcazar.



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Court of the Virgins, Alcazar.



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Front of the Dormitory of the Moorish Kings and the Court of the Virgins, Alcazar.



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Gallery in the Court of the Virgins, Alcazar.



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The Court of the Virgins. Capital of the Door of the Hall of Ambassadors, Alcazar.



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The Alcazar.

Court of the Virgins. Capital of the Gate of the Hall of Charles V.



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Palace of the Dueñas. Door of the Chapel.



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Palace of the Dukes of Alcala, Commonly called Casa de Pilatos.



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The Court in the House of Pilate.



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Court of the House of Pilate.



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Gallery in the Court of the House of Pilate.



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House of Pilate.



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Gallery in the Court of the House of Pilate.



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Angle and Statue in the House of Pilate.



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House of Pilate.

Entrance to the Ante-room of the Chapel.



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The Staircase in the House of Pilate, by Barrera.



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House of Pilate.

Entrance Door of the Oratory.



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House of Pilate.

Way out to the Flat Roofs in the High Gallery.



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Staircase in the House of Pilate.



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House of Pilate. Doors of the Offices in the High Gallery.



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House of Pilate.

Window of the Prætor’s Hall leading to the Garden.



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House of Pilate.

Barred Window in the Prætor’s Garden.



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House of Pilate. Bolt on the Prætor’s Gate.



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House of Pilate.

Window in the Ante-room of the Chapel.



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House of Pilate.

Section of the Ceiling in the Prætor’s Hall.



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Palace of the Dueñas in Seville.



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House of Pilate.

Mosaics in the Hall of the Fountain.



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Palace of the Dueñas in Seville.

Glazed Tiles in the Socles of the Chapel and Arches.



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Mosaic of the Peristyle in the Palace.



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House of Pilate.

Mosaic in the Hall of the Fountain.



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Mosaic in the Court of the House of Pilate.



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Mosaic in the Court of the House of Pilate.



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Mosaic in the Court of the House of Pilate.



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House of Pilate.

Mosaic in the Chapel.



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Bartolomé Esteban Murillo.




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Altar-screen of the La Gamba, by Luis de Vargas.




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Descent from the Cross, by Pedro Campaña.




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St Anthony of Padua visited by the Infant Saviour while kneeling at his Prayers, by Murillo.




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Our Lord Baptized by St John Baptist, by Murillo.




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The Guardian Angel, by Murillo.




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St Leander, by Murillo.




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St Isidore, by Murillo.




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St Ferdinand, Crowned and Robed, by Murillo.




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Madre Francisca Dorotea Villalda, by Murillo.




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St Anthony with the Infant Saviour, by Murillo.




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Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, by Murillo.




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Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, by Murillo.




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Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, by Murillo.




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Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, by Murillo.




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St Justa and St Rufina, Patron Saints of Seville, holding between them the Giralda Tower, by Murillo.




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St Bonaventure and St Leander, by Murillo.




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St Thomas of Villanueva giving Alms at the Door of his Cathedral, by Murillo.




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The Annunciation of our Lady, by Murillo.




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St Felix of Cantalisi restoring to Our Lady the Infant Saviour, whom she had placed in his Arms, by Murillo.




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Adoration of the Shepherds of Bethlehem, by Murillo.




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St Peter Nolasco kneeling before Our Lady of Mercy, by Murillo.




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The Deposition—St Francis of Assisi supporting the Body of Our Lord nailed by the Left Hand to the Cross, by Murillo.




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St Joseph and the Infant Saviour, by Murillo.




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St John the Baptist in the Desert leaning against a Rock, by Murillo.




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St Augustine and the Flaming Heart, by Murillo.




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St Felix of Cantalisi and the Infant Jesus, known as, “San Felix de Las Arrugas,” by Murillo.




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St Anthony with the Infant Saviour, by Murillo.




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Deposition from the Cross, by Murillo.




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Our Lady with the Infant Saviour in her Arms, by Murillo.





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Our Lady and the Infant Saviour, known as “La Virgen de la Servilleta,” by Murillo.




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Our Lady seated, with the Infant Saviour in her Lap, by Murillo.





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St Thomas of Aquin, by, Zurbarán.




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The Virgin of the Grotto, by Zurbarán.




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St Bruno talking to the Pope, by Zurbarán.




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The Day of Judgment, by Martin de Vos.




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Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, by J. Valdes Leal.




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Jesus crowning St Joseph, by Zurbarán.




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The Devout Punyon, by Zurbarán.




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Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception. The Virgin surrounded by Cherubim. By Fr. Pacheco.




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Our Lord’s Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes, by Murillo.




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Moses striking the Rock in Horeb, by Murillo.




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St John of God, sinking under the Weight of a Sick Man, assisted by an Angel, by Murillo.




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The Death of St Hermenigild, by J. de las Roelas.




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The Apostleship, by Juan de las Roelas.




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The End of this World’s Glories, by Valdes Leal.




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The Pietà, or the Virgin supporting the Dead Body of her Divine Son, Altar-screen, by Luis de Vargas.




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St Joseph holding the Infant Saviour in His Arms, by Murillo.




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Our Lady of the Girdle, by Murillo.




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Portrait of Ferdinand VII., by Goya.




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Portrait of Charles IV., by Goya.




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The Annunciation, by F. Zurbarán.




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The Death of Laocoön and his Sons at the Siege of Troy, by El Greco.




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Caton of Utique tearing open his wounds, by Josef Ribera.




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Pietà. The Virgin holding the Dead Saviour in her Arms, by Morales.




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Portrait of El Greco, by Himself.




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The Miracle of St Vœu. St Hugo in the Refectory with several Chartreux, by Zurbarán.




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The Martyrdom of St Andrew, by J. de las Roelas.




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The Last Supper, by P. de Cespedes.




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Christ on the Cross, by Zurbarán.




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Portrait of the Figure in Pacheco’s Picture at Seville, supposed to represent Cervantes.



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The Virgin and the Child Jesus, by Alonso Cano.




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The Descent from the Cross, by Alejo Fernandez.




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The Cathedral.



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The Giralda.



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The Giralda.



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Cathedral. The Gate of Pardon.



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Cathedral. Puerta de los Palos.



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Specially drawn for The Spanish Series



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Cathedral. View of an Organ.



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Cathedral. Monument to Columbus.



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Cathedral. Silver Tabernacle (weighing 45 arrobas).



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Alcazar Gardens.



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Alcazar Gardens.



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Alcazar Gardens.



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House of Pilate. The Goddess Ceres.



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House of Pilate. The Goddess Pallas Pacifer.



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Roman Walls.



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Patio de Banderas and the Giralda.



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Plaza de San Francisco.



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St Mark’s Church.



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Plaza de San Fernando.



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The Town Hall. Details of the Old Part.



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Façade of the Palace of San Telmo.



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Statue of Velaquez.



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Plaza de la Constitución.



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Plaza de la Constitución.



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Calle de Sierpes.



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Calle de Sierpes.



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A Street in Seville.



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Hercules Avenue.



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The Pasadera.



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Courtyard of La Caridad.



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Plaza de San Fernando.



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Plaza de Gavidia.



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View from the Pasadera.



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The Drive.



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Paseo de las Delicias.



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The Quay.



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Partial View of Seville.



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Plaza de Toros.



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Fields of San Sebastian.



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Park of Maria Luisa.



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Railway Station of M.Z.A. Principal Façade.



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Railway Station of M.Z.A. General View.



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Triana Bridge.



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View from Triana Bridge.



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View from Triana.



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San Telmo from Triana.



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The Cathedral. Our Lord Crucified. Sculpture in the Sacristy.



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Specially drawn for The Spanish Series


[A] There is one picture only by Roelas in the Prado. His work is hardly known outside Seville. In England we have at least one of his pictures, a fine example, in a private collection.

[B] There is a picture by El Greco, the wonderful portrait of himself, in the Museum. It came quite recently from the Palace of San Telmo, where also was once the really grand picture, “The Death of Laocoön and his Sons at the Siege of Troy.” The remarkable and interesting “Trinity” in the Cathedral, attributed to El Greco, is the work of his pupil Luis Tristan, a painter neglected too long. Seville has no picture by Navarrete; the one work of Morales, the triptych in the Sacristiá de los Calices of the Cathedral, is not typical of his strange power.

[C] The most important is the “Adoration of the Shepherds,” until recently in the Palace of San Telmo; but this work has been removed with other pictures in the collection of the Infanta Maria Luisa Fernanda de Bourbon. The really fine picture on the same subject in our National Gallery is now attributed to Zurbarán; probably to him, too, belongs the “Dead Warrior,” now assigned to Velazquez.