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The chapel was the church of a former monastery of Augustine monks, founded in the 14th century. At the end of the 17th century, the community moved to Santiago and abandoned the monastery in Arzúa, of which no trace remains. The chapel, however, continued to be used for worship, being under the jurisdiction of the monastery of Compostela until the secularization of Mendizábal. It is located in Rúa Cima do Lugar, in the urban section of the Way of St. James, between the municipal pilgrim hostel and the rectory.

The masonry building has a longitudinal ground plan and a tiled roof. The area of the sanctuary stands out in the elevation. The entrance door is located in the west façade and consists of a trumpet-shaped, semi-circular arch with a quadrangular opening above it; the front is crowned by a belfry with a single opening.

On the inside, the Gothic arch dividing the nave and the presbytery stands out, along with two tombs on both sides of the nave, as well as inscriptions on two of the doors.

All that remains of the first altarpiece, which dated from the 16th century, is the predella, which is now located in what is believed to be its original location. At the end of the 18th century, another wooden one was made in the rococo style; it was taken down in the 20th century during the chapel’s first restoration.

In 1984, restoration work begun on the church, which was transferred from the diocese to the local council for time indefinite. The matter was managed by a trust formed by Pilar García Montero, Ramón Torreiro González and Luis Vidal Abad. They were helped by Antonio Fraguas Fraguas, Salvador Aires Espada, Manuel Díaz Díaz and Bernardino Villaverde Villaverde.

It was reopened, as a cultural hall, on June 21, 2006, with Maruja Mallo’s travelling exhibition “A transgresión feita muller.”

This building is the starting point of the “Val do Iso” Route promoted by Arzúa Town Council.



Image gallery

Chapel of A Madanela

More information

Rúa Cima do Lugar 1, Arzúa, 15810
Present use

Exhibition and cultural hall

981 500 222 (Oficina de Cultura)

Open every day from 7 to 9 pm (whenever there are exhibitions or other activities)