The Basilica of de la Encina is a Renaissance-Style catholic temple located in the town of Ponferrada. The Basilica is named after the Virgen de la Encina, because the image of the Virgin that keeps inside, was hidden in a holm oak during the Muslim domination in the comarca of Bierzo. Its trail was lost for a long time until it was found centuries later by the Knights Templar, while were stocked up of wood .
The Basilicaof the Encina in Ponferrada, is one of the most outstanding symbols of the city of Ponferrada
The construction of the Basilica de la Encina began in 1573, but was not finished until 1707, due to the cessation of work for many reasons. This caused that be built in different phases and it had influences from different styles.
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The first phase of construction was of 1573-1593 which was built only the main chapel and the transept.
In the second phase of 1593-1612 the works due to shortage of money stopped.
In the third phase new plans were made, the cruise is finished and traces of the tower were created although for lack of money foundations of the tower was only built.
In the last and fourth phase the works are retaken by modifying the plans again and completing the construction. Once the work is complete, the Basilica of the Encina underwent some changes as the“spire” of the tower, which was destroyed by lightning and restored in baroque style contrasting with the bottom in Renaissance style.
When we visit the Basilica de la Encina we find that the plant of the Basilica is a Latin Cross, with the cruise of arms short and wide, to the left of the main entrance we see the baptistery (area baptism), on the right are the stairs to the grandstand and in the center is the lobby.
In the second tranche, on the left there is a side door with a pediment neoclassical abroad, dating from the seventeenth century.
The image of the Virgin in the chapel is located on the front of the basilica.
In the Basilica de la Encina visits are made every day after the service, free admission.
More information about the Más Basílica of the Encina at ponferrada.org
Cover image: wikimedia.org