Valladolid - Collegiate Villagarcía de Campos, the little Escorial

Basilica of the Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos in the province of Valladolid

When we were arriving at Villagarcía de Campos, in the region of Montes Torozos less than 60 kilometers west of ValladolidThey told me that we were going to visit a collegiate church that was known as the «small Escorial«.

It was about the St. Louis Collegiate Church, which had been built in the 16th century with a clear inspiration in the Basilica of the Escorial monastery.

Passing by the ruins of what was a castle, which is now being rehabilitated, I learned that this small population of less than 400 inhabitants had a milestone highlighted in its history.

Facade of the Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos in the province of Valladolid

In that castle-palace he spent his childhood Jeromín, the natural son of Emperor Charles Vwhose paternity was recognized by Philip II, and became known as Juan from Austria.

Don Luis de Quijada And his wife Mrs. Magdalena de Ulloa they were the tutors of Juan from Austria, and it was the latter who ordered the construction of Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos to serve as a pantheon for her husband and herself.

Villagarcía de Campos Collegiate Museum in the province of Valladolid

It is thought that in the construction of the collegiate in style herreriano renaissance, which was completed in 1580, the Jesuit participated Guiseppe Valeriano, who was friends with Juan de Herrera, the architect of the aforementioned Escorial monastery.

Visit Collegiate Villagarcía Campos

The result is that now when you get to visit the Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos, in its interior layout you will certainly recognize certain reminiscences of the monastery's basilica.

Sacristy of the Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos in the province of Valladolid

It is precisely in its interior where all the artistic wealth of the collegiate church is concentrated. From its exterior it is only worth highlighting its very austere facade, which follows the model of all the churches of the Jesus company, congregation that now continues to run it.

I also tell you that you do not expect to find an isolated church, but that the collegiate church is located next to other buildings, since after that, a novice-college was attached.

The church presents the characteristic Latin cross profile, with three naves separated by very robust columns, and three chapels on each side.

Sculptures of the altarpiece of the Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos in Valladolid

It will certainly get your attention on altarpiece of the High Altar, built according to the design of Juan de Herrera, and with various sculptures made in alabaster.

On both sides there are two altarpieces with sculptures of San Ignacio de Loyola Y San Francisco Javier.

Reliquary Chapel

Now, without a doubt, the great artistic corner of the Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos It is called Reliquary Chapel.

Chapel of the Reliquary in Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos in Valladolid

To understand the reasons that led to the construction of this chapel, a miniature church filled on all sides with small sculptures and sumptuous reliquaries that house what are supposed to be relics of numerous saints, it is necessary to be located in the 16th century.

Behind the Trento council the rise of the Counter Reformation, a time when the cult of the relics of the saints was one of the expressions of the opposition against the Protestant ideas.

And in that context, Mrs. Magdalena de Ulloa, great devotee of the sacred relics, ordered to build the aforementioned Reliquary Chapel.

Chapel of the Reliquary in Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos in Valladolid

Surely you will be surprised by this corner where you can more than 50 statues made by Tomas de Sierra, 42 of them small.

Other stays to visit in what is the Villagarcía de Campos Collegiate Museum, are the sacristy, with various priestly ornaments, some of the sixteenth century, or the Chapel of the Novitiate.

Crypt of the Collegiate Church of Villagarcía de Campos in Valladolid

Finally, the Crypt located under the High altar. The bodies of Don Luis Y Mrs. Magdalena.

Pictures Collegiate Villagarcía Campos

Here you have more photos of the Collegiate Church of San Luis, in Villagarcía de Campos, in Valladolid.