Convento das Servas de Cristo - Borba

Convento das Servas de Cristo - Borba


The Convent of the Servants of Christ, belonging to the Order of St. Clare, was built during the 17th century, the main construction work having taken place between 1604 and 1644. It is one of the most typical examples of regional architecture, with a simple structure consisting of fairly smooth-shaped and discreet blocks, in a style known in Portugal as "plain architecture".

The church, with a side entrance that is typical of enclosed orders, is interesting because of the decoration of its interior. It has just one nave and its side walls are covered with 17th-century patterned azulejo panels, whilst the vaulted ceiling is enlivened with fresco paintings. Above one of the doorposts is a marble cartouche in the transitional baroque-rococo style, placed there in homage to one of the abbesses, D. Isabel da Natividade, and the royal shield of D. João V. The high altar, situated at a much higher level than the rest of the church, has an interesting Mannerist altarpiece, in which the wood carving is in perfect harmony with the paintings. Visitors should also notice the curious way in which the columns end in female figures.

The cloister is one of the largest in the country. Annexed to the church is the 17/18th-century Capela da Ordem Terceira de São Francisco (Chapel of the Third Order of St. Francis), with an entrance from the outside.

Terreiro das Servas

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