Tavira Churches

Ermida de São Roque

It belonged to the confraternity of São Roque being originally a  late-Gothic temple with, Renaissance, Mudejar and Manueline motifs.
It belonged to the confratern alle-day church of São Roque, being initially a late-Gothic, 16th-century temple, a period in which the cult of São Roque in Portugal met a great impulse. The reconstruction of the temple in the mid-eighteenth century is attributed to the Algarvian architect Diogo Tavares and Ataíde, which expanded and altered the configuration of the building, introducing it to Baroque forms. In fact, the main portico repeats the shapes of the spans used by Diogo Tavares, here with the original particularity of having an oculus inscribed on the eardrum. The window uses a drawing near that of the window that centers the interior staircase of the convent of Our Lady of Grace, being finished with a dynamic pediment of pitches marked in the center with a shell. The façade is crowned by interrupted pediment and wavy to the center, repeating the drawing of the finish of the church of St. Sebastian of this city, but with the particularity of presenting itself decorated by mass works, where the figures of two lions and two boys stand out. The interior of the temple consists of a single rectangular nave and square chancel flanked by sacristy. In the chancel, covered by hemispheric dome on pendants, opens a door on each side with framed shoulder pads and slightly curved verga, of model identical to that of the secondary door of the Gallery Palace of this city. The sacristy is covered by a cradle vault divided into four sections by torais arches, each section intersected by a pair of decorative penetrations, repeating the system of coverage of the sacristy of the church of St. Sebastian of Tavira or the nave of the hermitage of Santo António de Faro, temples also attributed to Diogo Tavares. Although documentary data attesting to the occurrence of these works are not known, the reading of the forms present here indicates a probable intervention directed by Diogo Tavares and Ataíde in the fifties of the eighteenth century. In fact, some relationships are known between the master flowerbed and members of the military class of Tavira, traditionally linked to the brotherhood of São Roque. Examples are the contracts adjusted, first, with Captain João da Silva, in April 1755, for the construction of houses in alto de Santa Ana de Tavira; and, second, with the smart-ass of the military hospital of the city, Francisco Paulo das Chagas, in March 1763, by which Diogo Tavares acquires a house located in Rocio do Cano, next to the hermitage of São Roque. The temple was voted to abandon from 1862, being devoid of its artistic filling. After being acquired by the Chamber of Tavira in 1935, it has served as a kennel and warehouse, being rehabilitated in 2016/17.

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