Art History and Research
On our last trip to Girona, where we enjoyed a beautiful rainy day and were able to watch the water pouring out of the gargoyles on the cathedral, we embarked on a study and compilation of gargoyles in Catalonia (Spain).
Today’s post is dedicated to the gargoyles of Lleida. On the hill known as the Turó de Lleida stands the magnificent old cathedral of Seu Vella, one of the city’s most beautiful buildings. The foundation stone was laid in 1203 and building work continued between the 13th and 15th centuries.
The bell tower, where practically all the cathedral’s gargoyles are to be found, was started in the 14th century and completed in the 15th century.
Seu Vella (Lleida, Spain).
The iconography of the gargoyles is not very varied, however they are peculiar figures that are reminiscent of other gargoyles in the country (Casa de las Conchas – the Sea Shells House – in Salamanca).
You can see figures of dogs with similar features, such as flattened noses or large fan-shaped or protruding ears.
There’s also a lion, you can make out the mane, although the face has some unusual features that make it a very original gargoyle.
We saw a human figure too, apparently an angel with large wings and hair. This gargoyle is quite deteriorated, but it’s still a superb image.
There are other headless gargoyles and some are so damaged that it’s impossible to recognise what they are. But, as always, it’s interesting to discover, look at and admire the Spanish gargoyles across the country.
Doctora en Historia del Arte. Investigadora especializada en el estudio de las gárgolas.