San Andrés church was built in the quarter of Ajates (a suburb of mediaeval origin in which the main trade was masonry) in the second quarter of the 12th century. It was made in Caleno granite (very typical of the Romanesque style in the town) and is set according to liturgical criteria with an upper end with three apses that correspond to the three naves in the interior; it does not have a transept nave. The protruding central apse is of particular interest thanks to the number of figures and capitals and the closed arches on the straight section of the upper end, which stand as a unique example of Romanesque capitals. The variety of icons on the interior and exterior capitals is the largest of all of Ávila's Romanesque buildings and is associated with the Masters of León. The central apse has two absidioles of a smaller size and a plainer composition.
The upper end is covered with decreasing stepped vaults: barrel vaults along the straight section and calotte vaults along the curved section. The southern absidiole has a lobulated arch used as the entrance and unparalleled in any other church in Ávila at the time.
The south front has a semi-circular window and the keystone of the semi-circular archivolt contains a Chi Rho which, fitted in the 13th century, is considered as the first of its kind in the town. The tower stands next to the western side, built onto the nave during or after the 14th century.References:
The Castle of Gruyères is one of the most famous in Switzerland. It was built between 1270 and 1282, following the typical square plan of the fortifications in Savoy. It was the property of the Counts of Gruyères until the bankruptcy of the Count Michel in 1554. His creditors the cantons of Fribourg and Bern shared his earldom. From 1555 to 1798 the castle became residence to the bailiffs and then to the prefects sent by Fribourg.
In 1849 the castle was sold to the Bovy and Balland families, who used the castle as their summer residency and restored it. The castle was then bought back by the canton of Fribourg in 1938, made into a museum and opened to the public. Since 1993, a foundation ensures the conservation as well as the highlighting of the building and the art collection.
The castle is the home of three capes of the Order of the Golden Fleece. They were part of the war booty captured by the Swiss Confederates (which included troops from Gruyères) at the Battle of Morat against Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy in 1476. As Charles the Bold was celebrating the anniversary of his father's death, one of the capes is a black velvet sacerdotal vestment with Philip the Good's emblem sewn into it.
A collection of landscapes by 19th century artists Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Barthélemy Menn and others are on display in the castle.