Tuesday, October 21, 2014


The Cathedral of Evora was built between 1280 and 1340 C.E. and is right around the corner from the Pousada dos Loios, where we stayed in Evora on our recent tour of Portugal and Spain.  Our outstanding guide for the cathedral tour explained that, growing up Catholic in Portugal, three-fourths of the girls were, like her, named Maria.

And as our tour director further explained, roughly 80 percent of the Portuguese and Spanish populations are nominally Roman Catholic, with nearly all of the remainder being nonreligious.

I thought the cathedral's interior was outstanding and I found myself taking too many photos.  Here, first, is a standard wide-angled shot looking from the transept toward the sanctuary.

And a few more, zooming in on the sanctuary, apse, and finally apse ceiling.

I think I was enchanted by the unusual earth tones that dominated the interior.  I thought, too, that the placement of the major crucifix was outstanding, as it is highlighted against the darker background of the apse walls.

The cathedral included an unusual ceiling feature, as shown in the following shot.

The side aisles were also dramatic.

Below is a shot looking toward the rear of the nave.

The underexposed image creates a nice chiaroscuro effect, I think, although there is a lot of "noise" in the center of the image because of the high ISO setting needed in the low-light conditions.  

Maria pointed out one of the cathedral's unusual sculptures, done in the 1400s, a pregnant Mary.  Yup.

Even so, across from Mary is a companion statue of Gabriel there to inform her of her condition, as if she didn't already know.  Gabriel seems a bit immature.

And to complete the sculptures, here is a close up of one of the crucifixes.

By opening up the aperture for this shot and focusing on the Christ figure, I was able to incorporate the complex background without detracting from the figure's clarity.


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