Built on the site of the former Great Mosque, Seville Cathedral in Spain is the largest Gothic church in the world. One of the unique Seville cathedral facts is that it took around a century to complete the cathedral. A tribute to the dominance of Catholics over the defeated Moorish kings, Cathedral de Seville is also the largest cathedral in the world. Famous for its fascinating history, the cathedral has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987, it has served as a burial ground for many famous figures, including Christopher Columbus and Ferdinando III of Castile.
Location: Seville, Spain
Alternative Name: The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the See
Architectural Type: Church
Previous Building Type: Mosque
Origin Of Cathedral: Moorish, Gothic
Date Of Completion: 1506
Architectural Specifications (Statistics): Length - 135 m; Width - 100 m; Height - 42 m; Spire height - 105 m
Burial Grounds Of Historical Figures: Christopher Columbus & his son, Maria Diaz de Padilla, Fernando III, Alfonso X, Pedro I, Elisabeth of Hohenstaufen.
The site at which the Seville Cathedral served as the former Almohad Mosque. After the conversion of the mosque into a cathedral, several alterations were made in the structure with features like Giralda, Patio de Naranjas, and Puerta del Perton being included in the cathedral's architecture.
La Giralda, the Seville Cathedral Bell Tower, is the crowning glory of this attraction. It originally served as the minaret of the Almohad Mosque. It has a height of 105 m (343 ft) and its square base is 7.0 m (23 ft). Interestingly, it was built with Morocco's Koutoubia Mosque in mind, which is why there are certain similarities.
Over the years, the main dome collapsed twice - 1511 and 1888, but both times it was restored to its original glory. The cathedral was subjected to several refurbishments and extensions in different architectural styles, including Renaissance, Neo-gothic, Baroque, and more, becoming a unique architectural wonder.
Seville Cathedral has been registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site along with the Alcazar palace and Archivo General de Indias in 1987. Along with being a historic former mosque that has been converted into a cathedral, it is an important landmark in the city along with being a burial site for several historic figures.
Upon its completion in the early 16th century, Seville Cathedral Spain surpassed Hagia Sophia in Istanbul to become the largest cathedral in the world. Currently, it still holds the position as it is a bishop’s seat unlike the two largest churches, St. Peter’s Basilica and the Basilica of the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida. It is also the largest Gothic church and the fourth-largest church in the world.
Seville Cathedral Spain is home to 80 different chapels including Capilla Real, or the Royal Chapel. According to the official reports, a total of 500 masses were conducted daily in all the chapels in the 19th century. Many famous people have been buried in a few of the chapels including:
One of the most interesting Seville cathedral facts is that the original building on the site was a mosque built by Moors in the 12th century. It was being built to replace the earlier mosque as the congregation had grown and couldn’t accommodate everyone in its modest prayer halls. The construction of the mosque was complete by 1176 except for the minaret. In 1248, the mosque was Christianized, but it was in 1401 when it was decided to repurpose the mosque and build a great Christian church on its site.
Seville Cathedral Bell Tower, La Giralda, is the best part of this cathedral. Another one of the interesting Seville cathedral facts is that this bell tower was originally built as a minaret of Almohad Mosque between 1184 and 1198. After Reconquista, it was converted into a bell tower with a Renaissance-style top. In the 16th century, the statue called El Giraldillo was added to represent the faith in Christianity. The tower is 104.5 meters tall and is one of the most important symbols of Seville since medieval times.
According to the local oral tradition, the cathedral members said ‘Hagamos una Iglesia tan hermosa y tan grandiosa que los que la vieren labrada nos tengan por locos’. What they meant was to build a church that is so beautiful and majestic so that anyone who sees it after completion will think cathedral members to be mad. The original entry from 8th July 1401 recorded by Juan Cean Bermudes in 1801 also included ‘una tal y tan buena, que no haya otra su igual’ which translated to ‘a building so good that none can be its equal’.
Seville Cathedral architecture was both beautiful and grand, as dreamt by the original members of the cathedral. One of the most stunning Seville cathedral facts is that it has 4 huge façades that combine to form 15 majestic doors. Since the cathedral was built in a Gothic architectural style, all the doors were beautifully ornamented. The decorations displayed the different scenes from the life of Jesus. The major doors are Door of Baptism, Assumption, Saint Michael, Saint Cristopher, Sticks, Bells, Conception, Lizard, Sanctuary, Forgiveness, Prince, Saint Miguel and Palos.
A. Originally, Almohad mosque was there at the site of Seville Cathedral.
A. According to Seville Cathedral's history, it was constructed on the site of Almohad Mosque. The mosque was built in the 12th century by the Moors who had conquered the Iberian peninsula. When the Catholic Kings of Spain reclaimed Seville, the mosque was destroyed in 1406 to build the famous Seville Cathedral.
A. Seville Cathedral is a Roman Catholic Cathedral located in Seville, Andalusia, Spain.
A. Seville Cathedral is one of the largest cathedrals in the world, built to showcase the power and wealth of the city. The cathedral was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987.
A. Yes, Seville Cathedral is the largest cathedral in the world and the 4th largest church, and the largest Gothic church in the world. It is also the burial ground for many prominent figures such as Christopher Columbus, Ferdinando III of Castile, and more.
A. Several figures are buried in the Cathedral de Seville including Christopher Columbus and his son Ferdinand Columbus, Fernando III of Castile, Maria Diaz de Padilla, Alfonso X of Castile, Pedro I of Castile, and more.
A. It took almost a century for the completion of Seville Cathedral and it was inaugurated on 6th October 1506.
A. The bell tower of Cathedral de Seville was originally the minaret of Almohad Mosque. After the construction of the cathedral, this bell tower was called 'Giralda'.
A. Of the Great Almohad Mosque, the Sevilla Cathedral features the minaret-converted-bell tower named Giralda which is one of the main attractions of the cathedral. Apart from that, the Patio de los Naranjos or the Patio of the Orange Trees, the Moorish gate, and Puerta del Pardon were also originally a part of the Great Mosque.