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Mosteiro de Santa Clara-a-Nova
Ranked #26 of 85 things to do in Coimbra
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: After the canonization of Saint Isabel in 1625, the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Nova was started to be built, by order of king João IV, in 1649 on the left bank of the River Mondego, intended to provide shelter to the Clarissa nuns of the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Velha, following the plans drawn up by the chief Royal engineer and Professor at the University of Coimbra, Friar João Torriano. In 1677, in a great procession from the former Monastery, Queen Santa Isabel's remains were moved and placed in a silver tomb in the high altar. The church was designed by the architect, Mateus do Couto. In the large apse at the top of the church, there is a polychrome statue of Saint Isabel, by Teixeira Lopes (19th-century). The baroque gilded woodwork should also be noted, together with 18th-century paintings that allude to the lives of franciscain saints. The fine original Gothic tomb of the Holy Queen is exposed in the choir, together with the carved woodwork altar pieces from Santa Clara a Velha, and mannerist paintings. Next to the church and the choir, the second largest cloister of Portugal is worth a visit.
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