Index – Culture – He found a medieval hospital and a chapel in his own family home

Index – Culture – He found a medieval hospital and a chapel in his own family home
Index – Culture – He found a medieval hospital and a chapel in his own family home
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This breakdown is gorgeous

In November 2016, Juan Francisco León Catena, a young Spanish computer scientist, bought a three-story building in his hometown, Úbeda, together with his wife. Since the downtown property hidden at 10 Cava Street was rather run down and dilapidated, Juan and his father started the family renovation of the newly purchased property. The father-son duo started the reconstruction with the attic. When the main wall shared with the house at 4 San Jorge Street was partially demolished, a sensational surprise suddenly appeared before the eyes of Juan and his father.

Photo: Divulgação / Juan Francisco León Catena

Behind the brick wall, the view of a large portico, densely articulated with pillars and columns, unfolded in front of them, the central element of which was the coat of arms of the Messiah family. They went down one level, where they also started to tear down the wall. Here, the top of a huge gate and a bust depicting St. Peter placed in a niche right next to it were scraped out from under the mortar. They ran down to the ground floor and into the basement to pick, where they also found the ornately designed plinth of the respectable-sized gate.

Together with the attic, the height of the ornate structure, covering three levels, exceeded 11 meters.

Due to the importance of this incredible discovery, Juan immediately told the city consistory, whose members, together with the specialists of the Andalusian Cultural Delegation, established that our fit computer scientist had discovered two very important historical monuments built into each other.

Renaissance solitaire

The larger building was rebuilt several times, but the XVI. It was the main entrance of St. George’s Hospital, which took its final form in the 19th century. This colonnade was carved by the stonemason Gonzalo Martínez de Alarcos based on the designs of Andrés de Vandelvira, Spain’s most famous Renaissance architect. The renovation costs of the hospital, which was rebuilt in 1545, were covered by the general Pedro Almindes Chirino, a bloodthirsty conqueror who, as the governor of New Spain, spread across North and Central America, together with his compatriots, robbed and massacred the natives of the New World.

Towards the end of his life as a knight of Santiago, Pedro regretted his violence and snobbery, so in order to score a good point with his creator, he expanded the San Jorge Hospital at his own expense, which, along with St. George, was often called the Hospital of the Founders of the Holy Spirit or the Hospital of the Poor of Jesus Christ.

From the documents of the time, it was revealed that the nobleman had to request a special papal permission to place the bust of St. Peter in the facade niche, this type of representation was not common and widespread at that time.

The smaller building was the impressively detailed facade of the Blessed Sacrament chapel, founded in 1347. This church building used for burials was the origin of the health facility reserved for those with fevers and lepers, built right next to it because of the House of God. Of course, the knight Pedro Almindes Chirino also rebuilt this medieval chapel in Renaissance style.

Ebugatta lawsuits, rolling drugs

Although according to the 1985 Law on Historical Heritage included in the Spanish Constitution, Juan and his family could claim half of the value of the find, the Regional Ministry of Culture still did not want to pay the discoverers their rightful rights. The specialist authority constantly denied the historical significance of the find and its outstanding value.

The national indignation was only compounded by the fact that the young couple could not continue the renovation of their family home due to the archaeological excavation, so Juan Francisco León Catena and his wife had to live with their happy parents at first, and then a few years later out of necessity they had to buy another house a hundred meters away, but still also in Cava Street.

Of course, the family sued the professional ministry due to the state’s violation of law, which was the start of a series of lawsuits. The end of the four-year-long litigation was concluded on June 30, 2020 by the High Court of Andalusia, which recognized not only the owner’s right to a monetary reward of up to 50 percent for his discovery, but also the neighboring owners at 8 and 12 Cava utca Up to a 25-25 percent commission.

However, the city administration and the Regional Ministry of Culture were offended by the lost lawsuit. Despite the fact that the city of Údeda received UNESCO World Heritage protection in 2003 due to the buildings of the Renaissance architect Andrés de Vandelvira, the specialized authority has not yet scaled up the two XVI. the ideological and fiscal value of a 19th century facade. Because of the lack of it

Juan Francisco León Catena has still not received his rightful reward, already awarded to him by the Supreme Court.

The problem is compounded by the fact that the local consistory did not even bother to respond to the computer scientist’s proposals that were acceptable to everyone. So far, Juan has presented two ideas to the board. One of his practical suggestions was that the municipality should buy the corner house in question from him, and turn the building into a cute Renaissance museum or a nice little restaurant or maybe a cafe for the benefit of the public.

The other idea operated with a completely different technical solution. According to this, he is willing to go along with demolishing the rear tract of his house to a width of two meters so that everyone can admire the Renaissance facade from the narrow alley created in this way, but in exchange for the loss of square meters, the Úbeda council must undertake the entire renovation cost of his mutilated building. He did not receive a substantive response to any of his proposals.


The article is in Hungarian

Tags: Index Culture medieval hospital chapel family home

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