While the exterior of the Church of Sao Roque is a plain as it gets, with no striking elements to catch tourists’ eye, the interior is a whole different story. The Church of Sao Roque boasts of one of the richest interiors in Lisbon, standing out, at the same time, as one of the most exquisite expressions of the Baroque style. Thus, the splendidly painted ceiling of the nave overtops 8 chapels of which one (the fourth one on the left) is said to be the most expensive chapel in the world.

This chapel, called Capela de Sao Joao Baptista (Chapel of St. John the Baptist), was built by Luigi Vanvitelli in the mid 18th century, but the story of its construction is quite winding. Thus, it was King Joao V who commissioned the construction of this chapel in 1741, and it was in Rome that the chapel was originally built. The chapel required the use of all sorts of precious and expensive materials, such as ivory, lapis lazuli, agate, gold, silver and porphyry. After construction, it was dismantled and brought to Lisbon in 1747, and then reassembled within the Church of Sao Roque.

Another highlight of the church refers to the sacristy, which amasses a great deal of paintings. The fact that the church also shelters a collection of sacred relics (of which of noteworthy importance are a thorn of the infamous crown of Jesus, as well as a part of his holy crib) adds to the visiting card of the edifice.

Church of Sao Roque (Igreja de Sao Roque)
Largo de Trinidade Coelho, Lisbon, Portugal
00351 213 235065
00351 213 235401
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