Convent of Our Lady of Atocha

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This convent of Dominicans was founded in 1523 by Fray Garcia de Loaysa (later Grand Inquisitor) and Fray Juan Hurtado de Mendoza (confessor of Charles V) by virtue of a brief of Adrian VI.

Although the title of the convent was the Our Lady of the Assumption, since its foundation will be best known for Nuestra Senora de Atocha, as the Dominicans was built on an ancient shrine where since ancient cult that was dedicated to the Virgin .

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Convent of Our Lady of Atocha en Madrid

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This convent of Dominicans was founded in 1523 by Fray Garcia de Loaysa (later Grand Inquisitor) and Fray Juan Hurtado de Mendoza (confessor of Charles V) by virtue of a brief of Adrian VI.

Although the title of the convent was the Our Lady of the Assumption, since its foundation will be best known for Nuestra Senora de Atocha, as the Dominicans was built on an ancient shrine where since ancient cult that was dedicated to the Virgin .

Indeed, since the Cantigas of Alfonso X the Wise make mention of this site on which the convent was built, so that during the Old Regime, Our Lady of Atocha became the most iconic cult center of the city. So when there was a drought, the locals came to Atocha with the body of San Isidro to intercede with the Virgin and achieve the desired rain. Also there came the monarchy, to request of Our Lady in their favor in military campaigns. This enormous devotion made the Virgin of Atocha the quintessential Madrid patron of the old regime, that if, in permanent rivalry with Notre Dame de la Almudena.

As for the building, must be one of the largest and was able to Madrid. According Antonio Ponz, his church was preceded by an arcaded market closed with iron gates. Since the auction, was entered into the temple through a simple cover decorated with a coat of arms of the King, and a statue of Santo Domingo.

Inside, the most notable was undoubtedly the Chapel of Our Lady of Atocha, of royal patronage from Philip II, and rebuilt several times during its history. Located on the side of the epistle, as Antonio Ponz was surrounded by a gallery that served to place flags and standards taken from the enemy in battle. Also interesting was the chapel, whose patronage had counts of Nieva, and where the altar stood, composed of several bodies, and decorated with eight Angelo Nardi paintings depicting the life of Jesus Christ.

In 1809 the French spent the headquarters building, being ruined after the war of independence, so that at time of Fernando VII was almost completely rebuilt. Finally, in 1836, with the confiscation of Mendizabal, the building became the property of the royal, being destined to Barracks convent and church Invalides, a military parish. It was demolished around 1890, built in its place the Basilica of Our Lady of Atocha.

Source: © 2003 Development, Consulting and Training Computing SA (DAYFISA) - Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (UAM).

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Convento de Nuestra Señora de AtochaMadrid
Madrid, Comunidad de Madrid (España)