Route

La ruta del Santo Grial en Castellón y Valencia
2 June, 2017 / ,

La Ruta del Grial recorre las tierras de Aragón y de la Comunidad Valenciana, emulando la antigua ruta que debió de seguir la reliquia desde San Juan de la Peña hasta llegar a la ciudad de Valencia. E invita al visitante a desplazarse a diferentes puntos de la geografía valenciana relacionadas con el Santo Grial.

La ruta entra en la Comunidad Valenciana por el municipio de Barracas, situado a unos 1.000 metros de altitud en un altiplano montañoso. Le sigue la población histórica de Jérica, rodeada por un impresionante paisaje mediterráneo de montaña. Continuando por el río Palancia se llega a Segorbe, ciudad que cuenta con un monumental patrimonio civil y religioso.

En dirección a Valencia, la localidad de Serra ofrece al visitante productos de artesanía: dulces y embutido tradicional. Y en El Puig de Santa María se encuentra el Real Monasterio, declarado Monumento Histórico-Artístico Nacional en 1969. Por último, cabe destacar la huerta valenciana que acompaña al visitante por los municipios de L´Horta Nord, entre ellos Massamagrell y Alboraya, hasta llegar a la ciudad de Valencia.

La Asociación Cultural “El Camino del Santo Grial” (www.elcaminodelsantogrial.com) colabora en la vertebración de la ruta y ofrece siempre magníficas atenciones a los visitantes.

Texto de: Ana Mafé, doctoranda sobre el Santo Cáliz.

Artículos relacionados:
¿El Santo Cáliz está en la Catedral de Valencia?
Descripción del Santo Cáliz

Is the Holy Grail in the Cathedral of Valencia?
1 June, 2017 / ,

Route

According to oral tradition, the most important historical relic of Christianity is in the Cathedral of Valencia. It is the Holy Chalice blessed at the Last Supper. The sacred vessel that, in the order of chivalry’s collective imaginationfrom medieval literature, would give origin to ‘The search of the Holy Grail’

There are numerous documents that have been giving clues that the Chalice of Benediction, which Jesus used at his Eastersupper, is guarded somewhere. Not only do we refer to the literature about the search for the Holy Grail, but to the thousands of artistic images that have represented it throughout all Christendom.

So why do we say that the sacred goblet that is in the city of Valencia, in the Metropolitan Cathedral of Santa Maria, is the Holy Chalice?

Towards the 33rd year of the Christian era, one Easter night, Jesus celebrated an ancient rite in Jerusalem. The disciples who accompanied him claimed that something extraordinary had happened in that celebration.The cup of benediction contained more than wine.

The death of Jesus, a few days later, created a moment of confusion for all. However, the direct example of his words: “Do this in remembrance of me”, became the necessity to repeat the ritual of the Last Supper. It meant following his mandate.

According to oral tradition, this same cup remained in Jerusalem until Jesus’ Roman disciple, Simon Peter, took it to Rome; capital city of the Roman Empire in which he began to preach the teachings of his master and to celebrate the Easter rite in the houses of patricians and Romans. Later, the sacred vessel would pass from Pope to Pope, just as they also passed prayers and blessingsto each other.

The Roman emperors would soon look upon this new religion with suspicion. In AD 258, Valerian, an emperor declared bankrupt,ordered the persecution of Christians to death and tried to appropriate all their wealth.

Pope Sixtus II, before being arrested and martyred, asked his deacon San Lorenzo (Saint Lawrence) to distribute all that he had in his possession to Rome’s poor. San Lorenzo, of Hispanic origin, did so. He divided everything, but took pains to guard the Holy Chalice.

The sacred vessel, together with a letter where he explained everything about it, was given to a small entourage that left for Huesca, its native city in Hispania. There it remained in custody until, in the year 712, the Saracen conquest led the bishop of Huesca to seek shelter in the Pyrenees.

After stayingsafeguarded in various places in the area, finally, between the eleventh and fourteenth centuries, the Holy Chalice remained protected in the Benedictine monastery of San Juan de la Peña, located near the city of Jaca, in the Kingdom of Aragon. A neuralgic point on the Jacobean Route, where the most important European kings and nobles passed through on their way to Santiago de Compostela.

In that epoch, Christian kings fought for sacred relics in Jerusalem. And it was then, when the sacred vessel guarded in thePyrenees fortress monastery became the much sought after Holy Grail of theorder of chivalry’s collective imaginationfrom medieval literature.Beingthat there were countless noble and Christian monarchs who wanted to obtain this piece for their royal collections.

But the Holy Chalice would not pass into royal hands until 1399. After multiple requests to the prior of the monastery, the king of Aragon Martin the Human took over the sacred vessel through a swap, attesting to it a notarial document. He offered the monks a magnificent golden chalice and, in return, took the cup of benediction to Zaragoza, where it would remain, forming part of the Royal Treasury, until, in 1432, King Alfonso the Magnanimous moved his court to the city of Valencia and ended up requesting monetary aid to the council of canons from the Cathedral, to be able to cope with his contentions.

Before a notary, the monarch’s brother left in pledge all his Royal Treasury and, as the king never returned the loan, since then the Holy Chalice remains in the custody of the city of Valencia’s Cathedral.

At present, the Holy Chalice is displayed in the chapel that bears its name, on a shrine in the form of a heart, made of gold, which enhances its beauty even further.

It is a unique opportunity to see this treasure that, in medieval literature, the knights of King Arthur’s court sought with passion and heroism. A unique opportunity to contemplate the Holy Chalice of Jesus’ Last Supper in person, during the month of the year in which Valencia celebrates the Corpus Christi festivity.

Text by: Ana Mafé, Holy Grail Phd student.

Related articles:
Holy Chalice’s description
The Holy Grail Route in Castellón and Valencia

Valencia, the Silk City
3 May, 2017 /

Discover the historical legacy left in Valencia by the most important industry between the 14th and 18th centuries: the silk trade

Itinerary: A visit to the interior of the Silk Exchange (Lonja de la Seda), a Gothic building that has been a World Heritage Site since 1996. We will also see the recently restored Higher Art College of Silk, which is now the Silk Museum. A tour around the Velluters district, where most of the Valencian silk workers guilds were based. A Valencian costume shop “Albaes” will complete this tour discovering the Valencian silk route.

Tour Language: Bilingual (Spanish-English). Departure Point: Tourist Info City Hall. (Pl. Ayuntamiento s/n)

Times: Saturday, 11am.

Duration: 2 hours.

Price: Adults: 20€ / Children (from 7 to 16): 10€ / Free for children up to the age of 6.

Source/Written by: Fundación Turismo Valencia.

 

Related article: Six centuries producing silk in Valencia. The history of the Silk Road

The Borja, a universal Valencian family
2 May, 2017 / ,

The Route of the Borja

The Route of the Borja is a unique experience that traverses the splendor of the most universal Valencian family of Europe in the XV and XVI centuries

The Borja family (The Borgias) has left a deep mark on universal history. Since their Valencian origins, the Borja had a decisive intervention in all spheres of power, both political and religious, and became nobles, princes, patrons, advisors to kings, popes, and saints. A powerful lineage wrapped with ambition, intrigue, legends and mystery.

Calixto, Alejandro, César, Lucrecia, Francisco… A family that contributed to generate a great legend and the universally known as the myth of “Los Borgia”. Its time is the Renaissance, that of great art and the new humanistic culture, it is the era of discoveries. The Borja advanced to modernity, modern was their idea of power and the manner of exercising it. With them Renaissance art and an impressive historical, cultural and artistic heritage came into Valencia, which still lives today in an exciting route of fine arts with more than 600 years of history.

The Route of the Borja

The Route of the Borja is a unique experience that traverses the splendor of the most universal and powerful Valencian family of Europe in the XV and XVI centuries. To traverse its path is to stroll through an exciting show of art, landscape, history and culture.

In the city of Valencia, the route of the Borja reveals its exuberance in San Nicolás church, with sumptuous paintings already known like the Valencian Sistine Chapel. In the Cathedral, the Borja Popes built the majestic chapel of San Pedro and ordered the exquisite Renaissance frescoes of the angel musicians, admired throughout Europe. In the chapel dedicated to San Francisco de Borja you can admire two excellent canvases by Goya. The living trace of the Borja also passes by the family residence, Palace of Corts Valencianes and by the University.

Xàtiva and Canals are the cradle of the Borja. In Canals, the Tower of the Borja, the place where Pope Calixto III was born in 1378 is conserved. Situated just opposite is the Oratory that formed part of the palace complex. In Xàtiva, the birthplace of Rodrigo de Borja is conserved in a beautiful square. The artistic heritage is also exhibited in the Collegiate Church, the churches of San Francisco and San Pedro, where Alexander VI was baptized, the Museum of Fine Arts, the Palau, Santa Clara convent, Santa Ana hermitage and the impregnable castle, an imposing vantage point and testimony of history.

In Gandia, on the Mediterranean Sea shores, the Ducal Palace is an admirable architectural complex and the most distinguished Borgiano monument.The majority of the Borja Dukes and their descendants were born here, among them San Francisco de Borja in 1510. The Salon de Coronas (Crowns Hall) and the Saint’s Oratory stand out while the Gold Gallery hypnotizes the visitor with its beauty. In Gandia the mark of the Borja imposes itself in the Collegiate church, the Santa Clara convent and the University.

This fascinating route also passes through Albaida, where Luis Juan de Milá and Borja’s nephew took up residence and began to raise a fortified palace that rises proudly in the town center. Another highlight is the Sanz palace, located in the village of Vallés. The route combines monuments, heritage, rich gastronomy and beautiful landscapes, such as the surroundings of Castelló de Rugat where the Ducal Palaceremnants are preserved.

Llombai was a barony acquired by Cardinal Rodrigo de Borja for his son Pedro Luis. Here, one can contemplate la Iglesia de la Santa Cruz (the Church of the Holy Cross),integrated in the convent of the Dominicans. Llombai celebrates a historic recreation known as “Mercado de los Borja” (Borja’s Market) which receives hundreds of visitors.

The Borja route also leads us to two monasteries, authentic rural cathedrals of art and seclusion, such as San Jerónimo de Cotalba in Alfauir and Santa Maria de Simat de la Valldigna.

Source/Written by: Agència Valenciana del Turisme.