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Monastery of Jeronimos: Burial Place of Portuguese Kings

For Centuries, the Portuguese were the bravest explorers in all of Europe. Reaching the coasts of Africa, South America, South Asia, and even Japan, these explorers were fearless, to the point of being audacious!

And being a nation of devout Catholics, Portugal would unsurprisingly have an Order whose sole task it was to pray and offer spiritual guidance for these brave souls.

Jeronimos Monastery

* At the center of this task of significant importance was the Monastery of Jeronimos.

Jeronimos Monastery

* Built in 1495, Jeronimos has been both the final stop, for sailors and explorers leaving the peninsula for faraway lands, and first stop, for those who were lucky enough to come back home.

Jeronimos Monastery

Jeronimos Monastery

* The responsibility of offering spiritual guidance fell on the Order of St. Jerome.

Jeronimos Monastery

* A congregation of hermit monks who patterned their lives after the 5th century hermit, St. Jerome, the man who translated most of what is now the Bible into Latin.

Jeronimos Monastery

* St. Jerome is considered a Doctor of the Church and Christianity as a whole; universally recognized by Catholics, Orthodox, Lutherans, and Anglicans. 

Jeronimos Monastery

Jeronimos Monastery

* Apart from being a Monastery, Jeronimos is also the burial place of Portuguese Royalty.

Jeronimos Monastery

* Caskets and Sarcophagi of the House of Aviz fill the various walls and chapels.

Jeronimos Monastery

* And among the kings buried here is Manuel I, who reigned during the period the Portuguese discovered Brazil and South America thereby bringing untold wealth to the kingdom.

Jeronimos Monastery

* Manuel I had an incredibly interesting love life; first marrying Isabella of Aragon, who died during childbirth, then marrying her younger sister, Maria of Aragon. 

Jeronimos Monastery

* Unfortunately, he struck-out as he did not marry the third sister, Joanna of Castille, who eventually became the mother of Charles V.

Jeronimos Monastery

* Charles V grew up to become King of Spain and Italy AND the Holy Roman Emperor; Europe's most powerful monarch ever.

Jeronimos Monastery

Jeronimos Monastery

Jeronimos Monastery

* Aside from Royalty, Jeronimos is also the burial place of several famous Portuguese explorers.

Vasco de Gama

* The most famous of which is Vasco de Gama, the first European to reach India by sea thus opening the Atlantic Ocean (West) and Indian Ocean (East) to an explosion of trade and exploration.

Jeronimos Monastery

* A worthy final resting place for such a worthy man!

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