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The Cathedral of St Peter the Apostle (Spanish: Catedral de San Pedro Apóstol) is a Roman Catholic church located in Jaca, in Aragon, Spain. It is the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Jaca.

Cathedral of Saint Peter the Apostle of Jaca
Catedral de San Pedro Apóstol
Puerta lateral San Pedro de Jaca.jpg
Side entrance of the Cathedral of Jaca
AffiliationRoman Catholic Church
Ecclesiastical or organizational statusCathedral
LocationJaca, Spain
Geographic coordinates42°34′13.8″N 0°32′56.8″W / 42.570500°N 0.549111°W / 42.570500; -0.549111Coordinates: 42°34′13.8″N 0°32′56.8″W / 42.570500°N 0.549111°W / 42.570500; -0.549111
StyleRomanesque, Gothic, Baroque, Renaissance
Groundbreaking11th century
Completed12th century

It is the first Romanesque cathedral built in Aragon (1070s - early 12th century)[citation needed] and one of the oldest in the Iberian peninsula. Its current appearance is the result of later additions and modifications introduced especially in the early modern period (from the late 15th to late 18th century). The cathedral was erected on command of King Sancho Ramírez, who, after renovating in Rome his vassal oath[clarification needed] to the Pope Alexander II (1068), had obtained from the latter the right to establish the episcopal seat in Jaca, then capital of the Kingdom of Aragon.



After Jaca became the capital of Aragon (1036), the city obtained the status of episcopal see in 1077. This made the construction of a cathedral church necessary. The starting date of the construction is unknown, but it is generally considered around that date. The main section of the church was completed around 1130. In 1395 a fire destroyed the cathedral's ceiling, which was rebuilt in the following years and was substantially renovated in the early 16th century. In the same period the aisles were added and the central nave was enlarged. In Baroque times the St. Horosia Chapel, the loggia and the cloister were added, while the interior received an altarpiece and other decorations.

In the late 18th century one of the apses was demolished and rebuilt, and the central apse was renovated.


The cathedral has a generally Romanesque structure, although several elements are in Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque styles. The plan is in the forms of a nave and two aisles, with three apses and two external portals, both provided with loggias (one of which in Renaissance style). Only one of the current apses is original. Of the other two, the central one was renovated in the 18th century, and the other one rebuilt in the same age.

Interior of the cathedral.

The nave and the aisles are separated by arcades supported by piers which are alternatively cruciform and cylindrical in plan, an element inspired by contemporary French structures. The capitals of the piers, in Corinthian style, have decorative motifs with vegetables and geometrical shapes. The ceiling was originally in wood: in modern times it was replaced by cross vaults. The large dome at the crossing is octagonal. On the four sides are several chapels built from the late-15th century to the mid-17th century. The earlier ones (those dedicated to the Holy Cross and to St. Augustine) are late Gothic in style, those designed in the 16th century (St. Michael and St. Jerome, for example) show late Renaissance and Mannerist influences; the chapel of St. Horosia, completely remade in the 18th century, is in Baroque style.

Artworks in the interior include the altarpiece of the St. Michael Chapel, sculpted by Gil Morales the Younger, Gabriel Yoli, Juan de Salas and the Florentine Giovanni de Moreto (or Moretto). The latter also directed the construction of the Chapel, which is considered amongst the finest examples of the Renaissance-Plateresque architecture in Aragon. The altarpiece of the high altar was finished in the early 17th century. The decoration of the central apse was painted by Manuel Bayeu, brother-in-law of Francisco Goya, in 1792-1793.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Archbis. Jesús Sanz Montes is the Apolostic Administrator since January 2010.[1]
  2. ^ Ministerio de Cultura de España, Iglesia-catedral de San Pedro, (R.I.)-51-0000627- 00000, 03-06-1931.


  • Bartal, Ruth (1987). "The Survival of Early Christian Symbols in 12th Century Spain". Principe de Viana (48): 299–315.
  • Moralejo Alvarez, Serafín (1979). "La sculpture romane de la cathédrale de Jaca. État des questions". Les Cahiers de Saint-Michel de Cuxa (10): 79–106.
  • Álvarez Martínez, Rosario (2002). "Music Iconography of Romanesque Sculpture in the Light of Sculptors' Work Procedures: The Jaca Cathedral, Las Platerías in Santiago de Compostela, and San Isidoro de León". Music in Art: International Journal for Music Iconography. 27 (1–2): 13–45. ISSN 1522-7464.

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