Santa Clara Convent, Funchal

4.3
#5 of 16 in Historic Sites in Funchal
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Santa Clara Convent Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
454 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • Very nice from the outside... But unfortunately always found closed in times to us possible. But from what you see from the outside and what you read should be very nice and interesting and that next time I will not escape..!
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  • Located in front of the Quinta das Cruzes, the Convent of Sta. Clara was founded by João Gonçalves da Câmara in 1496, grandson of Zarco, discoverer of Madeira Island IN 1419. Zarco himself, in turn, is buried under the altar of the Church of the convent and Martins Mendes Vasconcelos, his son-in-law. The walls are lined with precious tiles of the century. XVII. The site was destined to collect the Clarissas sisters (daughters of the nobility), who came then from the Portuguese continent, thus constituting the first community, notably by the coming of D. Isabel de Noronha and D. Constança de Noronha, granddaughters of João Gonçalves Zarco . The number of religious women increased to about 70 at the end of the century. XVI. In the century. XVII rose to 130 and at the beginning of the century. XIX was reduced to 70 again. In 1566, Funchal was looted for fourteen days in charge of the French pirate Bertrand de Montluc. The nuns were forced to abandon the monastery and took refuge in the Curral das Freiras which was a property belonging to the monastery, donated by the families of the religious to obtain the means of subsistence of it. In the precipitated escape they only had time to take custody, object of great value that had precious stones. The privateers remained in Funchal from 3 to 17 October. After his retreat, the nuns returned to the monastery and found great havoc in the church as in the monastery. On March 27, 1834, the Government published a decree that determined the extinction of the religious orders. The masculine orders were to leave immediately and the women could remain until the death of the last religious, but the admission of new novices and the issuance of vows were prohibited. At that time, the number of religious in the place was 60. The last survivor was Maria Amalia of patronage who died in 1890, then having the monastery passed to the state's possession. However, after the death of the last Clarissa, there were still in a part of the monastery four ladies protected by the Clarissas sisters who continued to occupy their space until the death of the last. These ladies were known as pupils. In 1896 the state gave the monastery to the Institute of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary, which opened the spaces of the church and the Cloisters to the worship and the welcoming of the people. There were other government movements for the extinction of religious orders, but the building remained in the possession of the Franciscanas who established a secondary school on site for the formation of religious to send to missions in several countries and still a nursery and primary education, welcoming more than 400 children. Since 1943 the convent is considered a heritage of the city of Funchal, being classified as National Monument.
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Google
  • Great place to learn some history about the island and religion. Tour guide was exceptional. Highly recommended.
  • Interesting and enlightening guided tour makes a visit special.
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