We visited the monastery of Yuste, last retreat of Carlos V

Between the gorges of the Tiétar river and small waterfalls of enormous beauty, and next to villages of medieval charm, in 1404 the monastery of Yuste began to be built. This is a Jerome monastery of austere architecture. He spent his last days Carlos I of Spain and V of Germany.

Brief history of the monastery of Yuste

It is a monastery mix of Gothic and Renaissance styles. A place that was under the patronage of the infant Don Fernando, brother of King Henry III.

Monastery Church - José Luis Filpo Cabana / Wikimedia Commons

But what stands out in its history is that it was the place chosen by Carlos V to live his desired retreat after abdicating in favor of his son Felipe II. Thus, on February 3, 1557, the emperor entered the monastery. He remained there for a year and a half, until his death on September 21, 1558.

Today, the so-called Emperor's Route is celebrated. It is a festival of tourist interest of Extremadura that is celebrated on February 3 and remembers the arrival of the emperor to this monastery.

As a consequence of the General Law of Confiscation, in 1836, the monastery of Yuste was sold and lived years of degradation. This was the case until in 1857 he was bought by the Marquis de Mirabel. He would begin to restore it, opening his church back to worship.

In 1931 it was declared a historic artistic monument. After the Civil War it was restored by the architect José Manuel González-Valcarcel.

Since 2004 it is part of the Royal Sites belonging to National Heritage. In addition, it is the headquarters of the European Academy of Yuste Foundation, which is dedicated to fostering the spirit of union in Europe.

The architecture of the monastery of Yuste

Renaissance cloister

The monastery consists of a Tardogotic church, built between 1508 and 1525. It has a single nave and polygonal head in which was the main altarpiece, designed by Antonio de Segura. In the center of the altarpiece is a replica of The glory, picture of the painter Tiziano whose original is in the Prado Museum.

Further, it has a gothic cloister, attached to the church and contemporary of this. It is rectangular and double height with carpanel arches and wooden roof. Another Renaissance cloister completes the monastic part.

Likewise, Inside the complex we must highlight the crypt under the main altar. This was the place chosen by Carlos V to rest forever. But the wish of the emperor never came true, because his son Felipe II sent his remains to the Royal Monastery of San Lorenzo de El Escorial.

The emperor's house-palace

The set is completed with a small house-palace built as housing for the emperor. It has a double floor, although it seems that Carlos V could only enjoy the upper floor before his death.

Palace-house - Benajmín Núñez González / Wikimedia Commons

The house is accessed by a wide and curious ramp. Through her, the monarch could reach his rooms mounted on the back of his horse.

Among its rooms highlights the so-called Royal Room, an austere room built by Gaspar de la Vega between 1554-55 following the indications of the emperor.

The fourth It is nestled next to the main altar of the church. From him, he could attend the homily prostrated in his bed or sitting in a special chair that can still be seen and that lessened the severe pain he suffered due to the constant attacks of gout he suffered.

A beautiful pond culminates the whole. This served both for the irrigation of the garden as a recreational space of the monarch, who spent his hours fishing in it.

Paradoxically, too He could be the trigger of his death. This is because, due to the bite of the mosquitoes that inhabited the pond, Carlos V contracted malaria, a disease that eventually ended his life.

The visit to the monastery and its surroundings

Entrance to the house-palace

It can be visited from Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. in winter and until 8:00 p.m. in summer. It has accessibility for people with reduced mobility through access ramps, parking and accessible facilities and common areas.

In its surroundings the towns are a must visit Cuacos de Yuste, located 2 kilometers away, Garganta la Olla and Valverde de La Vera, among others. In them where you can appreciate the charm of some villages that have been nestled in the Middle Ages. Are you going to miss them?

Video: Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor. Wikipedia audio article (October 2019).