Santiponce Itálica

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Santiago Apóstol Church

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The 13th-century Santiago Apóstol Church has a rectangular plan, also known as a hall church, with a nave covered by groin vaults and two aisles with pitched ceilings. As the plaque on the right aisle reads, the original church was demolished owing to its dilapidated state. It was rebuilt on a larger scale in 1883. The work was paid for by Nicolasa del Campo, the Marchioness of Loreto, in memory of her husband, Pablo Capetillo.

The tower, up to the height of the bell chamber, was originally the minaret of a 13th-century mosque built by the Moors. It was Christianised with the construction of the church and the addition of the belfry. Its origins are evident in the narrow staircase leading to the belfry.

The tower, built with large bricks, has a vaulted ceiling over the staircase built with very narrow bricks, given the size of the tower. The tower’s design is very similar to that of the Giralda in Seville, which is also a Moorish construction.

A tile panel on the church’s main façade depicts Saint James the Great, the patron saint of the town to whom the church is dedicated. The church is home to remarkable works of art, including the baroque high altar, presided over by the 16th-century image of Our Lady of Solitude. There are also statues of Saint Dominic and Saint James the Great dressed as a pilgrim, both from the 18th century, and an image of Our Lady of Expectation with a reliquary in her womb that was brought here from a former Franciscan friary.

The church is also home to the image of the Christ of the Remedies, located in the chapel of the Holy Sepulchre. This Christ and Our Lady of Solitude belong to the Confraternity that marches in procession on Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

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