The Catedral de la Santa Creu i Santa Eulàlia watches impassively the passing of time in a constantly moving and changing Barcelona. The Cathedral also reflects the different generations who have left their imprint and the blend of architectural styles in this predominantly Gothic building which needs to be viewed inside in order to fully understand its splendour.
Barcelona Cathedral was built over six centuries. Funded by donations from the medieval brotherhoods and guilds, the building work in Santa Creu commenced in 1298, on consecrated ground which was the former site of a 4th-century early-Christian basilica, which had been destroyed by al-Mansur's troops. Only the baptistery survives from this building. The chapel of Santa Llúcia was part of the Romanesque church built prior to the Gothic Cathedral, while the oldest surviving doorway is the Porta de Sant Iu. The main façade and bell tower were completed around 1890, following the original plans, in the neo-Gothic style. The interior is an impressive sight with 25 side chapels, the magnificent 14th-century cloister and the choir stalls, where the Knights of the Golden Fleece gathered during the visit of Emperor Charles V of Germany in 1517. The pulpit and the crypt, which is the burial place of Santa Eulàlia, one of Barcelona's patron saints, are also extremely beautiful. The cathedral is dedicated to the saint.
The Latin-cross floor plan and cross vault, as well as the magnificent stained-glass windows, fill the Barcelona Cathedral with light.
The cathedral roof is also open to visitors and commands interesting views of Barcelona. From here you can enjoy a close-up look at the bell towers and other architectural features that can only be seen from here, just as the builders would have seen them centuries ago.
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