Friday, June 30, 2017

Leon Scenes

As I said in a previous post, we really enjoyed Leon...
"Just go out there and get a hit!"

Leon is a major stop on the Camino Santiago Frances route

Pilgrim with severe blister problem

All kinds of Camino signage around

Beautiful old town

Genome store; wait, no...

Pilgrim sculpture, I think

Interesting old building: in fact, another early
Gaudi-before-he-was-Gaudi: the Casa de los

Not very welcoming

Now a bank building

Tyrion and Vicki; Spain had real games of

Lion and Castle

Old Camino albergue

Sooner or later you start seeing the yellow arrows in your sleep

Pilgrim's walking stick (not Black Diamond)

Sort of art nuvo

More pilgrims arriving every minute; we have noticed that on the
Frances they tend to be much more heavily laden than we were
on the Portuguese

Memorial to Charleton Heston 

One of my more abiding memories of Spain (atop a Roman

Contemporary sculpture, difficult to tell where the sculpture
begins and the installation ends

Even the round-abouts are interesting

Monday, June 26, 2017

Leon's Basilico St. Isidoro

Leon's Basilico St. Isidoro is a good Romanesque counterpart to its Gothic cathedral. Built over a temple to Mercury, then a Visigothic church, then a mosque, the present building, dating from the 10th century, was a church, a monastery, and the burial shrine of a number of Spain's earlier monarchs. That is, until Napoleon's troops used the royal pantheon as a stable in the eary 1800s. The murals adorning the royal pantheon somehow survived, and are today some of the best Romanesque art in Spain.
St. Isidore's (he was a pre-Moorish saint from Seville)
On the Camino Santiago from France, St. Isidore's has seen a
 variety of additions, renovations, etc.
Even a little Baroque

Mostly barrel

Very Romanesque
Nice carving

Maybe a bit Moorish


Sort of funny faces

Not very, however

In the royal pantheon, where they don't allow pix (these are
pix of pix, but give a good sense of the place); referred to, by
the St. Isidore folk as the "Sistine Chapel" of Romanesque

Mostly New Testament scenes, the gospel writers, and, of course,
a Pantokrator

All remarkably well preserved from the 12th century

More Romanesque faces

All over, but maybe not the best we have seen

Hilariously, in the gift shoppe, they offer
slides--slides--of the "Sistine Chapel" art, in lieu
of forbidding photography there! Anyone still
have a slide projector?!

Leon Cathedral: Interior

The interior was even better than the exterior...
Nave view...there's the usual choir, seemingly obstructing any decent view of the
majesty of the building

But wait! They've left the portal to the choir open, and you can
see all the way through to the altar

The other great thing about Leon Cathedral is its glass; not 12th or 13th century,
but an overall aesthetic effect comparable to the great ones

Again, peering through the choir to the altarpiece

In the choir, one bank of organ pipes, bristling with anti-aircraft
guns (normal in Iberia)


Up closer


More windows

Rose window

Chancel area

Altarpiece, appropriately International Gothic; the Baroque stuff was removed a
century ago (Leon is about the only church we have visited where the incongruity
between Gothic and Baroque was noticed; and dealt with)

Chancel ceiling

Another rose

Side aisle

13th century Madonna and Child

Stomping on the serpents of evil

Aisle vaulting

Polychrome Mary, with child

Glorious color; neat place