Old City of Salamanca
Old City of Salamanca
This ancient university town north-west of Madrid was first conquered by the Carthaginians in the 3rd century B.C. It then became a Roman settlement before being ruled by the Moors until the 11th century. The university, one of the oldest in Europe, reached its high point during Salamanca's golden age. The city's historic centre has important Romanesque, Gothic, Moorish, Renaissance and Baroque monuments. The Plaza Mayor, with its galleries and arcades, is particularly impressive.
Vieille ville de Salamanque
Cette ville ancienne, avec sa prestigieuse université, est située au nord-ouest de Madrid. Conquise par les Carthaginois au IIIe siècle av. J.-C., puis ville romaine, elle passa ensuite sous la domination des Maures jusqu'au XIe siècle. Son université qui est l'une des plus anciennes d'Europe a atteint son apogée durant l'âge d'or de Salamanque. Le centre historique de la ville renferme d'importants monuments romans, gothiques, mauresques, Renaissance et baroques. La Plaza Mayor, avec ses galeries et ses arcades, est particulièrement imposante.
مدينة سالامانكا القديمة
تقع هذه المدينة القديمة بجامعتها المرموقة عند شمال غرب مدريد. اجتاحها سكان قرطاجة في القرن الثالث ق.م ثم أصبحت مدينةً رومانيّةً قبل أن تقع تحت سيطرة العرب في القرن الحادي عشر. وبلغت جامعتها، وهي إحدى أقدم جامعات أوروبا، ذورتها في خلال عصر سالامانكا الذهبي. ويضمّ وسط المدينة التاريخي تحفاً رومانيّةً وقوطيّةً وعربية ونهضويّة وغريبة مهمّة. وتجثم في وسطها بلازا مايور بصالاتها وقناطرها الرائعةً التي تخطف الألباب.
Старый город в Саламанке
Этот старый университетский город к северо-западу от Мадрида был в III в. до н.э. завоеван карфагенянами. Затем он был древнеримским поселением, а позже, вплоть до XI в., находился под властью мавров. Один из старейших европейских университетов достиг своего расцвета в “золотой век” Саламанки. В историческом центре города находятся важные памятники романского и мавританского стилей, готики, Возрождения и барокко. Особенно впечатляет Площадь Пласа-Майор с галереями и аркадами.
Ciudad vieja de Salamanca
Situada al noroeste de Madrid, Salamanca fue conquistada por los cartagineses en el siglo III a.C. y luego fue ciudad romana. Posteriormente, estuvo bajo el poder de los musulmanes hasta el siglo XI. El apogeo de su universidad, una de las más antiguas Europa, coincidió con la edad de oro de la ciudad. El centro histórico posee importantes monumentos románicos, góticos, renacentistas y barrocos, entre los que destaca la imponente Plaza Mayor con sus galerías y arcadas.
Oude stad van Salamanca
Deze universiteitsstad ten noordwesten van Madrid werd in de 3e eeuw voor Christus veroverd door de Carthagers. Daarna werd het een Romeinse nederzetting, om vervolgens tot de 11e eeuw geregeerd te worden door de Moren. De universiteit, een van de oudste in Europa, bereikte zijn hoogtepunt tijdens de gouden eeuw van Salamanca. Het historische stadscentrum bevat Romaanse, gotische, Moorse, renaissance en barok monumenten. Vooral de Plaza Mayor is indrukwekkend, met zijn galerijen en arcades. Salamanca is een essentieel centrum van de Churriguera, een dynastie van architecten, decorateurs en beeldhouwers uit Catalonië. Hun stijl heeft in de 18e eeuw grote invloed gehad op de Latijns-Amerikaanse landen.
Outstanding Universal Value
Salamanca is an ancient university town situated in the west of Spain in the Autonomous Community of Castilla and León. The Carthaginians first conquered the city in the 3rd century B.C. It then became a Roman settlement before being ruled by the Moors until the 11th century. The university, one of the oldest in Europe, reached its high point during Salamanca's Golden Age. The city's historic centre has important Romanesque, Gothic, Moorish, Renaissance, and Baroque monuments. The Plaza Mayor, with its galleries and arcades, is particularly impressive.
Beginning with the Roman Bridge that spans the River Tormes southwest of the city, numerous structures still testify to the two thousand year-old history of antique Salmantica. The remarkable examples include the Old Cathedral and San Marcos (12th century), the Salina and the Monterrey Palaces (16th century), and above all the Plaza Mayor (1729-1755). But the city owes its most essential features to the University. The remarkable group of buildings in Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque styles, which, from the 15th to 18th centuries, rose to the institution that proclaimed itself “Mother of Virtues, Sciences, and the Arts” makes Salamanca an exceptional example of an old university town in the Christian world, such as Oxford and Cambridge.
The Cathedral School of Salamanca existed as far back as the late 12th century. The oldest university building in Salamanca, now the Rectorate, is the old Hospital del Estudio, built in 1413, with the final element of the building programme begun in 1533.
Salamanca provides one of the oldest examples of university facilities conceived as such rather than as colleges. However, the city also boasted many colleges, which were generally charitable institutions with close ties to the University.
Most of these buildings are located in the Old Quarter of the city. However, other monuments, located in the surroundings of the protected core area, are also part of the property. All are magnificent examples of religious architecture belonging to different styles: the Romanesque churches of San Marcos, San Juan de Barbalos, and San Cristóbal, the convents of Las Claras and Santa Teresa, the Gothic-Renaissance church of Sancti Spiritus, and the Colegio de los Irlandeses.
Criterion (i): The Plaza Mayor of Salamanca, built as a result of a solemn decision by King Philip V in 1710, is a unique artistic achievement in Baroque art, and considered by many the heart of the Golden City (La Dorada). Begun in 1729 according to plans drawn by Alberto de Churriguera, and finished in 1755 by Andrés García de Quiñones, and with contributions from Nicolás de Churriguera and José de Lara de Churriguera, it is one of the most important urban ensembles of 18th century Europe.
Criterion (ii): With the Plaza Mayor, the Clerecía (the Jesuit seminary), the college of Calatrava, the Colegio San Ambrosio, the churches of San Sebastián and Santa Cruz de Cañizares, the New Cathedral, and San Esteban, Salamanca is one of the essential art centres of the Churriguera family dynasty of architects, decorators and sculptors of Catalonia. The “churrigueresque” style exerted considerable influence in the 18th century not only in the Iberian Peninsula, but also in Latin America.
Criterion (iv): Although founded later than those of Bologna, Paris, and Oxford, the University of Salamanca had already established itself as one of the best academic institutions in Europe by 1250. It conserves an admirable architectural heritage that illustrates the diverse functions of a university institution in the Christian world. The Hospital del Estudio, the Escuelas Mayores, the Escuelas Menores, and the various colleges, which multiplied between the 15th and 18th centuries, form a group of exceptional coherence within a historic city also remarkable for its numerous civil and religious monuments.
Salamanca is a serial property consisting of the Old Quarter of the City and seven outlying component parts: Colegio de los Irlandeses, Iglesia de San Marcos, Iglesia de Sancti Spiritus, Convento de Las Claras, Casa-Convento de Santa Teresa, Iglesia de San Juan de Barbalos and Iglesia de San Cristóbal.
The inscribed property covers an area of 51 ha, with a 130 ha buffer zone, and contains all the necessary attributes to express the property’s Outstanding Universal Value. These key features include all the monuments related to the University and also highly important examples of Baroque art in Spain, particularly the Plaza Mayor. The key attributes illustrate the history of Salamanca and bear witness to its primary function as a university town.
Their recognition as classified monuments has helped to preserve them properly and to retain material integrity, as any intervention is required to safeguard their characteristics. However, regulatory measures and provisions in planning tools will need to be strictly enforced to ensure that potential threats derived from new construction and developments are effectively addressed.
The Old City of Salamanca has retained key attributes of authenticity in terms of form, design, materials, and substance. Location and setting characteristics have also been maintained, as well as the use and function within the modern city.
As a place in continuous evolution, the Old City has also been affected by modifications such as urban infrastructure, and building renovation. Yet, these changes have been under strict administrative controls, both from the municipality and the regional government, in order to not adversely affect the Outstanding Universal Value of the property. Nevertheless, continuous attention must be placed on the property in order to ensure that future interventions do not compromise these key attributes.
Protection and management requirements
The city of Salamanca was registered as “Historic Site” in 1951, the highest legal protection at the national level. The same legal regime, Property of Cultural Interest (BIC, Bien de Interés Cultural), is applied to most of the property’s component parts.
According to the existing laws of Cultural Heritage (Law 12/2002, 11 July, of Cultural Heritage of Castilla y León, Decree 37/2007, 19 April, that approves the Rules for the Protection of Cultural Heritage in Castilla y León and Law 16/1985, 25 June, of Spanish Historic Heritage), any intervention requires authorization from the Commission for Cultural Heritage of Salamanca, a body of the regional government.
Urban planning is under the responsibility of the City of Salamanca and its General Plan sets the general regulations for the entire municipality, including the historic area.
As a result of the collaboration agreement between the Council of Culture and Tourism of the Junta de Castilla y León and the City Council, a Management Plan for the property, as well as a new Urban Plan for the historic city, will be formulated and implemented. Both planning tools will function as a roadmap to set all principles and regulations that public administrations must take on account, in order to adapt their policies to the conservation of the Outstanding Universal Value of the property, which must prevail over other considerations. All the existing and future sectorial plans concerning tourism, accessibility, urban planning, economic and social plans, etc. will be included in this Management Plan. To ensure that the conditions of authenticity and integrity continue to be met, it will be important to consider that all proposed new interventions for rehabilitation of development be subject to Heritage and Environmental Impact Assessments. These assessments will be crucial to ensure the protection of key attributes and their setting in the historic townscape.
With the Plaza Mayor, Clerecía (Jesuit seminary), college of Calatrava, Colegio San Ambrosio and the churches of San Sebastián and Santa Cruz de Canizares, the New Cathedral and San Esteban, Salamanca is one of the essential centres of a dynasty of architects, decorators and sculptors from Catalonia, the Churriguera. The Churrigueresque style also exerted considerable influence in the 18th century in the countries of Latin America.
Although founded later than those of Bologna, Paris and Oxford, the University of Salamanca had already established itself in 1250 as one of the best in Europe. It conserves an admirable architectural heritage which illustrates the diverse functions of the University institution in the Christian world.
Beginning with the Roman bridge that spans the Río Tormes south-west of the city, numerous witnesses to the 2,000-year history of ancient Salmantica still stand. Its monuments have an exemplary value: the Old Cathedral and San Marcos (12th century), the Salina and the Monterrey palaces (16th century), and above all the Plaza Mayor, the most sumptuous of the Baroque squares in Spain, begun in 1729.
However, the city owes its most essential features to the University. The remarkable group of buildings in the Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque styles which, from the 15th to the 18th centuries, grew up around the institution that proclaimed itself 'Mother of Virtues, of Sciences and of the Arts' makes Salamanca, like Oxford and Cambridge, an exceptional example of an old university town in the Christian world. The cathedral school of Salamanca existed as far back as the late 12th century. It was transformed into a studium generale in the early 13th century and was granted its first royal privilege by Ferdinand III in April 1243. Taking Bologna as a model, the University was organized as an association of students (universitas studentium). During this first phase and until the 15th century, classes were held, as was the case elsewhere, in church buildings or in rooms rented by the University. The graduation ceremonies took place in a chapel of the Old Cathedral, a tradition that was continued until 1843. The oldest university building in Salamanca, now the Rectorate, is the old Hospital del Estudio, built in 1413. Its facade faces the Court of Schools.
The buildings housing the University proper, Las Escuelas Mayores, are grouped around a central patio and were built between 1415 and 1433. A final touch was added in the 16th century: a sculpted facade of three registers, made possible through a gift from the Catholic monarchs. In 1533 construction began on the final element of the building programme. Situated on the south-west side of the Court of Schools, this was a building centred on a patio which held Las Escuelas Menores, where preparatory courses for the university programme itself were taught. The new building was designed with regard to the Hospital del Estudio, whose facade was remodelled. Salamanca provides one of the oldest examples of university facilities conceived as such rather than as colleges. However, the city also boasted a good many colleges, which were generally charitable institutions with close ties to the University. The first foundation, the Colegio de San Bartolomé, in 1413; was inspired by the college San Clemente de Bologna. It served as a model for all the others with its lodging facilities and chapel. Now the seat of the Faculty of Letters, the buildings owe their present appearance to reconstruction during the 18th century.
The most beautiful example of the Renaissance colleges in Salamanca is the Colegio de los Irlandeses built in 1527-78 to house Irish students. Others ancient buildings are the Colegio de Huérfanos; the Colegio San Pelayo; the Colegio Santa Catalina; the Colegio San Ildefonso. The superb Baroque colleges of the 18th century are: Colegio de la Ordén Militar de Calatrava, Colegio de San Ambrosio, and Colegio de l'Universitad Pontificia, with its marvellous patio, Salon des Actos and monumental stairway. The more austere Colegio de Anaya was one of the last monuments of this institution to be built in a style inherited from the Middle Ages, along with the Colegio de Santa Maria de Los Angeles, founded in 1780; the latter incorporates the late Gothic style facade of the earlier Colegio de San Millán.Source: UNESCO/CLT/WHC
Salamanca, patrimonio local, patrimonio mundial (only in spanish)
Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte (in Spanish)
View photos from OUR PLACE the World Heritage collection
Ciudades Patrimonio de la Humanidad de Expaña
Patrimonio de la Humanidad en España (in Spanish only)
Salamanca (World Heritage Cities of Spain)