Lisbon – Manueline Gothic architecture

Manueline Gothic (Estilo Manuelino) was the flamboyant Portuguese architectural style during the 16th century, contemporaneous with the Portuguese Renaissance and the Age of Discoveries. It is named for King Manuel I (1495–1521) although the style’s influence has outlived his reign in the form of later Neo-Manueline constructions (see next post). Influences include Plateresque, Mudéjar, Italian, and Flemish architecture.

The defining example of the style is Jerónimos Monastery which was founded in 1501 to celebrate the voyages of discovery of Portuguese navigators.

Along with the nearby Tower of Belém, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and, in my view, a must-visit when visiting Lisbon. Click on the photos to get the best view of the beautiful stone carving.

Within walking distance of the monastary, the Torre de Belém is a 16th-century fortification that served as the ceremonial gateway to Lisbon. Located next to the Tagus river, historically it was a point of embarkation and disembarkation for Portuguese explorers.

Back in central Lisbon, in the old Alfama neighbourhood, the Casa dos Bicos (House of the Beaks) was also built in the early 16th century (1523). It has a curious façade of spikes and a loggia influenced by Italian Renaissance palaces, as well curvilinear Manueline-style windows.

You’ll find all these buildings marked on my Google map.

Neo-Manueline next!

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