Monastery of San Xulián de Samos

Samos, Spain

The Monastery of San Xulián de Samos  is an active Benedictine monastery founded in the sixth century. The monastery was the School of Theology and Philosophy. It is also an important stop on the Way of Saint James, a pilgrimage leading to the shrine of the apostle Saint James the Great.

The foundation is attributed to Martin of Braga. It is known to have been renovated by Saint Fructuoso in the seventh century, although the first written mention of this event is from the year 665. An inscription on the walls of the cloister of the lodge says that it was rebuilt by the Bishop of Lugo Ermefredo. After this restoration it was abandoned before the Muslim invasion until the reconquest of King Fruela I of Asturias, which took place around 760. When, years later, he was assassinated, his widow and son, the future Alfonso II of Asturias, the Chaste, found refuge in the monastery. That earned the monastery royal protection, starting with the properties in a half-mile radius, which would encourage growth.

In the early tenth century, the bishop of Lugo, Don Ero, attempted to seize control and expelled the monks. The Counts Arias Menéndez and Gutierre Menéndez, children of Hermenegildo Menéndez, were required to repopulate the new monastery with monks. Thereafter there were good relations between the monastery and the Count's family.

In the same century it was reoccupied at the behest of King Ordoño II of León and from 960 the community lived under the rule of St. Benedict, but in the twelfth century the Cluniac reform joined with Bishop Don Juan. The monastery of Samos enjoyed great importance during the Middle Ages, which is reflected by its two hundred villas and five hundred sites. In 1558, already incorporated into the Royal San Benito of Valladolid, the monastery suffered a fire that forced its complete rebuilding. The community was dispossessed in 1836, with the confiscation of Mendizabal, but the Benedictine monks returned in 1880.

It suffered another fire in 1951, after which it had to be rebuilt again. There are several architectural styles: late Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque.

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Details

Founded: 7th century AD
Category: Religious sites in Spain

More Information

en.wikipedia.org

Rating

4.5/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Jeff Miller (2 years ago)
What a great visit! A spectacular place and one of the biggest monastery's I have been to. I really loved the different paintings in one of their two cloisters.
Matthew Sandford (2 years ago)
We went to mass at the monastery and it was the most disrespectful thing I have every experienced. The priest refused the Eucharist to the congregation and walked out of the Church. I am 55 years old and have never seen any thing like this before. The majority of the congregation were pilgrims who deserved to be treated better than this. Shame on you.
Lanny Bailey (2 years ago)
This place is amazing and a must see if you're in the area. If you're walking the Camino, carve out the time and do the tour. Tons of history here.
Marti Fernández-Real Girona (2 years ago)
Astonishing monastery. Beautiful architecture from the outside and amazing claustre in the inside. The Church is by far the best in Lugo, and many sculptures and pictures in the walls. Totally worth it, visit it if you happen to be around.
ceta (2 years ago)
It is really amazing... only 5 euro entry.... but NO ENGLISH GUIDE! NOTHING IN ENGLISH HERE.... Many pilgrims are going this way and 70% of them is not speaking any spanish at all... is nice to take the tour but you will understand nothing for one hour
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