"Gargoyles & Graffiti"chronicles architectural elements that I find interesting or unique in my travels. Gargoyles are my passion, but today graffiti (which I hate but am learning to love as it is everywhere) is as much a part of architecture as the gargoyles and decorative railings that thrill me.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Virgin of Montserrat

Black Virgin of Montserrat
One of the highlights of my four nights in Barcelona this April was a half day tour to Montserrat. I chose an afternoon tour, not sure why, but I'm glad I did. The morning crowds were gone and the spiritual feel of the place was incredible. I actually had a spiritual experience while viewing the Black Virgin, also known as La Moreneta. As I approached to touch the sphere that is exposed from the glass that surrounds her, I felt someone squeeze my shoulder, hard but not hurtful. I realized my eyes were closed and when I opened them and looked to my right to see who had approached me, nobody was there. I choose to believe it was a comforting squeeze from Catalonia's patron saint, the Black Virgin of Montserrrat. She is black from the candles that burned day and night to honor her.

There is a long history of this statue. Supposedly she was brought from Jerusalem, others think she is from the 12th century. More information on the Black Virgin can be found here. There are many websites that give information on this wonderfully, spiritual place, but nothing beats going there. I highly recommend it.

Architectural detail of the outside of the Monastery at Montserrat

Monserrat Monastery has beautiful light fixtures

I will post more photos of all the amazing details of the Montserrat Monastery and the different ways you can get there.


  1. she is beautiful, and such ornate detail all around her, must have been quite the experience...........curious, do you know why the sphere is outside of the glass? Or why there is glass at all? good post!

  2. Thanks, I think the glass is to keep people from touching her. The sphere felt like metal and the Virgin is made of wood. She grants miracles, according to legend. I am a believer!!