DIFFICULTY LEVEL: Easy.
Pobra do Caramiñal is the result of the merger of two municipalities in 1822: La Pobra del Deán (Castelo) and Villa del Caramiñal. These two realities have their roots in the Middle Ages: one under the protection of the Cathedral Chapter of Santiago presided over by its Dean; the other under the protection of the fortress of Xunqueiras led by the Marquises of Xunqueiras and the House of Camarasa.
One of the enchanted places of Pobra introduces us to the medieval heart of this municipality: it is the surroundings of the church of the Dean that projects the Pobra of the Middle Ages dominated by the power of the Chapter of the Cathedral of Santiago. To speak of medieval Pobra is to speak of the Irmandiñas wars, of the plagues and their miseries, of moments of suffering and hardship that came to an end with the “Alba” of new times. This dawn of a new history takes place at the end of the 15th century after the last Itmandiña war. Three large buildings show the power of the Compostela mitre located in the enchanted surroundings of the Church of the Dean: The ruins of the Castillo del Deán, destroyed by the furious irmandiña march that left standing only a few stones; the Casa Grande de Aguiar, an example of the splendour of the 16th century and its illustrious figures in Pobra such as Domingo de Romay; the new era of the 16th century continues into the 18th century with the Pazo del Couto built by the Valderrama family.
But the magic of this place is to be found in the Church of the Dean, which is a sample of the society of Puebla in the 15th-16th centuries. The cultural, artistic and social DNA can be found in one of the most valuable jewels of Pobra’s heritage: the Alba Chapel. It is difficult to find three stone altarpieces joined together; the Plateresque work in granite stone is of enormous value, reflecting a complex Renaissance iconographic programme due to the diversity of symbols around the theme of death and resurrection. It is truly the sign of a new era, it is the “dawn” that rises to usher in a new era that abandons the apocalyptic Middle Ages to sound a new “trumpet” of hope. All this radiates to the beholder the presence of a society on the way, guarding the treasures of its identity and opening up to the new reality of a luminous time. The Alba Chapel embodies the identity of a people that is still alive today. The church itself is in a peculiar style called Gótico Mariñeiro, a mixture between the smallness and sobriety of late Romanesque and the light show of a sober and austere Renaissance Gothic: the sobriety of the apse, accentuated by the geometric lines of ribs and narrow, slender windows, is reminiscent of the purest Gothic of northern Europe.
Virtual Tour, Knowledge and Audiovisual Training
Pincheiro has a wide range of its own audiovisual materials that will give you an insight into this route, and offer you an understanding of the meaning of the route: the history of the Pazos, its protagonists, the meaning and structure of the Deán Church, and above all, an explanatory documentary of the Alba Chapel; also aerial views of the Pazos and the Deán Church. The virtual classroom, located on the premises of Pincheiro AT, offers you the possibility of getting to know this enchanted place in greater detail, and explains in detail everything that the Chapel of the Alba hides.
On-site tour and tour guide experience
The on-site tour is aimed at experiencing the place and personally finding its charm. It is a matter of liking the elements offered by the site and being able to locate the characters and events in history linked to this place.
Itinerary This route starts at the ruins of the Deán Castle, at the foot of the Castelo fountain, to go up to the entrance of the Pazo del Couto and to the house of Aguilar. In this tour, the grandeur of the Church of the Deán is imposed through the Apocalyptic samples of the Dawn and the figuration of the Renaissance through the stony musicians. Everything is history and beauty, even the silence of the place is a master of history.
To discover the depth of Pobra and the sense of its idiosyncrasy and tradition, you have to enter the Church, which will enchant you with its humble maritime Gothic style, to be enveloped in the magic of the Chapel of the Alba.