Lisbon Cathedral (Sé de Lisboa)

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Lisbon Cathedral (Sé de Lisboa)

Lisbon's austere Romanesque cathedral, Sé (which stands for Sedes Episcopalis), was founded in 1150 to commemorate the defeat of the Moors three years earlier. To rub salt in the wound, the conquerors built the sanctuary on the spot where Moorish Lisbon's main mosque once stood. Note the fine rose window, and be sure to visit the 13th-century cloister and the treasure-filled sacristy, which, among other things, contains the relics of the martyr St. Vincent. According to legend, the relics were carried from the Algarve to Lisbon in a ship piloted by ravens; the saint became Lisbon's official patron. The cathedral was originally built in the Romanesque style of the time, but has undergone several rebuilds and refurbishments over the years, and today its rather eclectic architecture includes Gothic, baroque, and neoclassical adornments.

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