Pre-Christian basilica with a regular layout, the central nave paved with a magnificent mosaic which can still be seen. It dates from the 6th century A.D., when the Byzantine army of Justinian (the Eastern Roman Emperor who aspired to rebuild the Western Roman Empire) had conquered the Balearic Islands.
It faces from east to west, and on the northern side retains a small hemispherical baptismal font built in stone and mortar, with a waterproof lining.
There are three separate sections: The rectangular apse with the base of an altar, surrounded by bunches of grapes, the central motif being a classical wine bowl and two peacocks. The grapes represent life, while the peacocks facing one another represent the resurrection. Between the nave and the head, two lions face a palm tree. They have been interpreted as a reference to Jewish tradition, which was particularly important at that time in Maó. The lions represent the power of death, while the palm is the tree of life. The nave for the congregation reveals geometric figures and depictions of birds, in a clearreference to Paradise.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.