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Cloister

Essentially serving the purpose of isolation for the monastic community, the Cloister was an agreeable and serene place for prayer, meditation and leisure for the monks of the Hieronymite Order.
Designed by Diogo de Boitaca, who commenced the work in the early 16th century, it was continued by João de Castilho from 1517 onwards and completed by Diogo de Torralva in 1540-1541. Due to its significance and symbolism, the Cloister is today one of the most important examples of Manueline architecture. With two storeys, vaulted ceilings and quadrangular layout, its decoration showcases the originality of this style by combining religious symbols (images from the Passion, amongst others), royal imagery (the Cross of the Order of Christ, the armillary sphere, the royal coat of arms) and naturalist elements (ropes and plant-inspired motifs that cohabit with late Mediaeval imagery of fantastic animals).
In the north wing of the lower cloister is the tomb of Fernando Pessoa, created by Lagoa Henriques in 1985.

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