Monastery of Sant Esteve de Banyoles

The cloister

The monastery’s Neoclassical cloister, with a well in the centre

The monastery’s Neoclassical cloister, with a well in the centre

Benedictine monasteries are built around a cloister that provides access to the monastic dependencies.

The current appearance of the Sant Esteve monastery cloister is the result of alterations conducted during the 18th century, when it was completely rebuilt. It features four archaded galleries encompassing a courtyard in the form of a pefect square, each side measuring 26.5 m. On the cloister podium stand 48 small semicircular arches, supported by pilasters and 32 small columns, two-thirds of which are grooved. The capitals feature floral motifs and and, in one case, the face of a monkey.

Few elements remain from the old Romanesque cloister, constructed probably during the 12th century, some time after the consecration of the Church in 1086. Worth highlighting are several capitals recovered in the monastery precinct, which present zoomorphic, anthropomorphic and geometric motifs of great historical and artistic interest. Research conducted into  these capitals suggests a chronological timeline between the 11th and 12th centuries.

The monastery had a second cloister that served its purpose from the 14th until the late 19th centuries. Now only the exterior door remains, with its typical baroque adornments from 1756.

OBJECTS

<p>Front image of the four sepulchres that make up the&nbsp;<em>Carner dels abats</em></p>
The abbots’ cemetery
The abbots’ cemetery
<p>Detail of the mural painting of the Gothic niche</p>
Painted niches
Painted niches
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