Category Archives: Madrid History

Holy Week (Semana Santa) in Madrid

Semana Santa Madrid
Spain is a predominantly Catholic country – regardless of whether people try to say it has become more secular (acceding to the Spanish statistics office 92% of the population have been baptised Catholic). And as in other mediterranean countries (Italy, Portugal and Malta) the Holy Week is the focal point of the church calendar. All over Spain you will find processions taking place, from small villages to large cities like Madrid. Starting with Palm Sunday and going through to Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Weekend, you will find these processions heading out from many churches in the centre of the capital.

These are the main processions taking place in the centre of Madrid over the next week:

Cristo de la Fé y del Perdón
Sunday 13th April – 7.00 pm
Basílica Pontificia de San Miguel
Calle San Justo, 4

Nuestro Padre Jesús de la Salud “Los Gitanos”
Wednesday 16th April – 8.30 pm
Parroquia Nuestra Señora del Carmen y San Luis
Calle Carmen, 10 – Centro

Maundy Thursday

El Divino Cautivo
Thursday 17th April – 7.00 pm
Colegio Calasancio de los PP Escolapios
Calle General Díaz Porlier, 58
Neighbourhood: Salamanca

Nuestro Padre Jesús Nazareno “El Pobre” y María Santísima del Dulce Nombre
Thursday 17th April – 7.00 pm
Iglesia de San Pedro “El Viejo”
Calle Nuncio, 14 – Centro

Nuestro Padre Jesús del Gran Poder y María Santísima de la Esperanza Macarena
Thursday 17th April – 8.00 pm
Real Colegiata de San Isidro
Calle Toledo, 37 – Centro

Good Friday
Jesús Nazareno de Medinaceli
Friday 18th April – 8.00 pm
Iglesia-basílica de Nuestro Padre Jesús de Medinaceli de los PP Capuchinos
Plaza de Jesús – Centro

Procesión del Silencio
Friday 18th April – 7.00 pm
Iglesia del Santísimo Cristo de la Fe
Calle Atocha, 87 bis – Centro

Santísimo Cristo de los Abaderos
Friday 18th April – 7.00 pm
Iglesia Catedral Castrense
Calle Sacramento, 11 – Centro

El Divino Cautivo
Friday 18th April – 7.30 pm
Colegio Calasancio de los PP Escolapios
Calle General Díaz Porlier, 58 – Salamanca

María Santísima de los Siete Dolores
Friday 18th April – 7.30 pm
Parroquia de Santa Cruz
Calle Atocha, 6 – Centro

Santo Entierro
Friday 18th April – 8.30 pm
Parroquia de Santa Cruz
Calle Atocha, 6 – Centro

Holy Saturday

Procesión de la Soledad
Saturday 19th April – 4.30 pm
Real Iglesia Parroquial de San Ginés
Calle Arenal, 13 – Centro

Virgen Dolorosa
Saturday 19th April – 8.00 pm
Iglesia-basílica de Nuestro Padre Jesús de Medinaceli de los PP Capuchinos
Plaza de Jesús – Centro

Related Links
Find out more about Holy Week in Spain or
in Spanish Semana Santa en Madrid

Madrid History, Background and Overview

Following on from the previous article (History of Madrid), you may be interested in taking a look at the Madrid entry on Wikipedia, a free online encyclpedia. Wikipedia is a fantastic site that allows people to add/edit information to any of the 374163 articles that are within the site. The Madrid entry includes information on its history, the barrios and transportation, amongst other things.

History of Madrid

From looking at my statistics, I have noticed that quite a lot of people have been searching for the history of the Madrid. Rather than writing an extremely long article I thought I would identify soem good sources where you can get more information.

City Council’s History of Madrid – You will find some excellent information here, neatly placed into folders, which describe Madrid from the first settlers to the 13th century. From that period to now the site only offers a chronology. The Spanish Tourist Office website offers a good, brief description on the history of Madrid, along with other useful links.

Descubre Madrid also offers a brief history of Madrid, broken down into different periods of history.

For an exhaustive on-line history of Madrid (in Spanish) look no further than Historia de Madrid, the website of Luis Enrique Otero Carvajal, lecturer of History at Madrid’s Complutense University.

The Madrid Histórico website gives people another view of Madrid through the ages, using maps. Its excellent interactive maps show how the city has changed over the years. There is also an interactive map of Madrid today which allows you to locate important monuments. Unfortunately, it is only in Spanish.

Related Article
Madrid History, Background and Overview (from Wikipedia)

Walking tours around Madrid

The Madrid Chamber of Commerce website has an interesting section, called Rutas por Madrid, on their site dedicated to tours around Madrid. They give you route maps, brief overview of what you are likely to see and recommended places to eat, drink and shop. They include Literario (Literary), Medieval, Romántico (Romantic), Moderno (Modern), Austrias, Borbones (Bourbons), Gran Vía-Princesa, Arte (Art).

You can also download the details in pdf format. The only potential disadvantage for some people is that the details are in Spanish. However, there is a section within this website called Madrid Routes which gives a cut-down version of the Spanish section – no downloadable pdf’s, sorry.

Related Article
Guided Tours of Madrid
Virtual Tours of Madrid

Real Ermita de San Antonio de la Florida – a Goya Masterpiece

On Madrid´s Paseo de la Florida you will find the Real Ermita de San Antonio de la Florida, which aside from being the final resting place of the great Spanish artist Goya is also known by some as Madrid´s Cistine Chapel. The chapel was built on the instructions of Carlos IV and the ceilings of the chapel were painted by Goya himself in 1798. The frescoes portray a celerated miracle by Saint Anthony of Padua and are thought to be one of Goya´s masterpieces. As a means of preserving the original chapel the Madrid authorities hit on the idea of creating an identical chapel next door for the purposes of worship – this was built in 1928. The chapel is a good 10-minute walk from the Metro Príncipe Pío but is well worth it. Once you´ve looked around the chapel, you may fancy going to Casa Mingo which is located right next door.

Opening times
Tuesday – Friday: 10am – 2pm and 4pm – 8pm. Saturday/Sunday: 10am -2pm. Closed on Mondays and holidays.
Príncipe Pío

Madrid – a brief overview

Madrid – capital of Spain and the supposed geographic and political centre of Spain; well the exact geographic centre of Spain is actually just outside Madrid but the centre of practically everything else Spanish, it certainly is. Madrid is the home of the Royal Family; the parliament; all major government ministeries; the Prado, Reina Sofia and Thyssen museums; the football team Real Madrid and now even David Beckham!

Madrid – a history in 2 paragraphs
There has been some sort of settlement in Madrid for well over 2000 years. Probably, the most important first rulers were the Moors who occupied the area for around 200 years. Madrid was known as ‘Magerit’, and was founded during the reign of Emir Mohammed I of Córdoba. Alfonso VI of Castile took over power of Toledo and Madrid around 1085. Felip II made Madrid the home of the royal court in 1561 but, unfortunately, the city is under developed over the next century or so and in 1700 Hapsburg Spain comes to an end with the death of Carlos II.

Philip V became the first Bourbon king of Spain in 1700 and ruled until 1746. Between the years 1808 and 1813 the French occupy Spain under Napoleon. The next hundred years see a series of kings, 2 republics and a dictatorship; finally in 1939 General Franco, leader of the right-wing nationalists comes to power and holds on to it until he dies in 1975. King Juan Carlos becomes king on Franco´s death and the country´s first democratic elections in over 40 years take place in 1977.