Photograph - Digital Capture, Watermark Not On Actual Print
Convento Franciscano de San Gabriel Arcángel (San Gabriel Friary) is a church and friary in Cholula, Puebla, Mexico.
The San Gabriel church and friary was established in 1529 by the Order of Friar Minors, OFM, Franciscans, on top of the destroyed temple to Quetzalcoatl with evangelization as its initial purpose. The current complex was built in the 1540s, beginning with the Capilla Real in 1540. The main church was begun in 1549, with the first stone laid by Martín de Hojacastro, who would become the third bishop of Puebla. There is also a third chapel by the name of the Capilla de la Tercera Orden and a cloister. The friary is dedicated to the Archangel Gabriel and is one of the largest Franciscan friaries in Mexico.
The complex is surrounded by a wall with pointed merlons which separates it from the main plaza of the city. The atrium is very large, with most of the space located in front of the two chapels. There are two portals on the west atrium wall, one that leads into the main atrium space and chapels, used for the indigenous population in the very early colonial period and the other directly in front of the main church. In three corners of the atrium, there are chapels, called "capillas posas", with pinnacle roofs and simple arches which are closed off by railings. These were used for outdoor processions. The atrium cross was sculpted in 1668 and is identical to that in the atrium of the Nuestra Señora de los Remedios sanctuary. The façade of the main church is smooth and its corners are reinforced with diagonal buttresses. This façade has been altered over time with the additions of a bell gable and a Baroque tower. The tower contains arched windows, columns and a small dome topped by an iron cross. The main portal is sculpted in sandstone in Renaissance style. The main doors are of wood and contain metal studs with different designs. The north portal has richer ornamentation.
June 10th, 2019
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