Above: Santiago, Saint James, stands guard under the eight-pointed star of the Spanish Renaissance lantern dome, cimborrio, of the Cathedral of Saint Mary of Burgos.
It seems more like the work of angels than of men.”King Philip II of Spain (1527-1598)
King Philip II’s glowing description of the gleaming white dome that crowns the intersection of the horizontal arms of a cross with the main nave in the Cathedral of Saint Mary of Burgos seems appropriate. Designed by Juan de Vallejo and Francisco de Colonia, the octagonal dome was completed in 1568 to replace an earlier lantern, less than 50 years old, that collapsed rather spectacularly in 1539. The Latin inscription above Santiago at the base of the dome translates to: “In the midst of your temple I will praise you and give glory to your name because you do wonders.”
As the exterior of the Cathedral makes obvious, the interior’s tall golden altarpieces, soaring domes, choir, chapels and cloisters are overwhelming in scale.Continue reading “Postcard from Burgos, Spain: A ‘work of angels’”