The Portugal Years: Bone Chapel

Bone Chapel  Courtesy of Maravilhas de Portugal and
Bone Chapel
Courtesy of Maravilhas de Portugal and

Usually, when we think of Bones Chapel we think of the one in  Évora. However, there are more chapels of Bones in Portugal and the Évora one is not unique. The Chapel of Bones Alcantarilha is located on the south side of the Parish Church of Our Lady of the Conception of the sixteenth century in the heart of the beautiful town of Alcantarilha in full Algarve region. The Chapel of Bones dating back also to the sixteenth century, set in the same stylistic line of other existing genre of chapels in the country, as in Évora, Faro and Lagos. Its interior is almost all covered and ornamented by more than 1,500 human bones, with the exception of work of sculpture of the figure of the Crucified Christ dating from the sixteenth century. Some say, though without any reliable evidence that these bones were of Jesuit brothers who perished in the region.

Would you like to visit here?



26 thoughts on “The Portugal Years: Bone Chapel

    1. I haven’t actually seen it in person, no. I’d like to know the reason for it more than anything. Why? You know? I feel some research coming on.


  1. I must say it’s rather beautiful in a macabre kind of way. I wondered if it was to clear old cemeteries, as your link confirms – I read a book (I wonder how many times a day I start a sentence with those words? 😀 ) Anyway, I read a book, Andrew Miller’s ‘Pure’ about the clearing of the cemetery of les Innocents in Paris, the bones of which are used in the Paris catacombs – something I’d love to see one day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I thought it was an interesting concept. I’d like to see them next time we go to Portugal. I’ll probably have to go alone since I fairly certain that Harry would think it strange.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Such a beautiful picture! But when I read more info about it, I said “Oooooh!” out loud. ( I’m sitting here in Taco Bell.) No, I wouldn’t like to visit, but I did like the picture.


Comments are closed.