Nossa Senhora da Conceição Velha Church

Lisboa - Baixa - Lisboa


The Nossa Senhora da Conceição Velha Church is situated in the heart of cosmopolitan Lisboa, in Rua da Alfandega, nearby the central Comércio Square.
The present building is the result of a reconstruction carried out after the big 1755 earthquake, when most buildings of the city were destroyed. The previous temple had origins in an ancient synagogue that was Christianized when the Jewish quarter was extinguished in 1496.
The damage of the earthquake was such that the few goods of the Conceição Church’s that were left were integrated in the old Misericórdia (Mercy) Church, which building was rebuilt, and the Misericórdia Church transferred to the Jesuit Saint Roque Church.
This 18th century building received many Manueline elements, reused in the façade, dating from the early 16th century (before 1530), mixing late Gothic and Renaissance decorative motifs.

The Church’s greatest highlight is its Manueline Portal representing Our Lady of Mercy, which was part of the ancient Misericórdia Church, featuring a tympanum with the images of the king D. Manuel the 1st, the Queen D. Leonor (sister of King Manuel and founder of the Order of Mercy) and Pope Leo X.
Another highlight is the image of Our Lady of Restelo, offered by Henry the Navigator to the friars of Belém Chapel where the navigators used to pray before leaving on their maritime conquests, by the time of the Portuguese World Discoveries, on the 16th century.

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