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Church of St Anthony

The church of San Antonio de Cervera is a monument of great historical importance in the region, as it is part of the ancient establishment of the Antonians, a hospital order that cared for those suffering from the “fire sickness” or “Saint Anthony’s fire”, a very common disease in the Middle Ages. This disease, also known as gangrenous ergotism, was caused by the consumption of grains contaminated with toxins produced by parasitic fungi. Its symptoms included hallucinations, convulsions and tissue necrosis, and was characterized by an intense burning sensation in the extremities. Legend has it that the Antonian Order was founded by a knight of the Dauphinate, whose son was cured after a pilgrimage to a shrine of St. Anthony in France, which led to the construction of a hospital and a church in Cervera dedicated to the cause.

The Antonian Order in Cervera was one of the oldest in the peninsula, founded around 1215. Over the centuries, the institution enjoyed royal prestige and favor, being visited by monarchs and even contributing to the founding of other institutions in Barcelona. Over time, however, the House of the Antonians fell into disrepair and passed into other hands. The current church, built in the 18th century on the site of a previous 13th century church, bears witness to this history and retains architectural elements that reflect both its Gothic and Neoclassical past. The 14th-century wood carving of Sant Crist is one of the most outstanding relics, linked to a legend that tells of its appearance after two pilgrims visited the old hospital.

  • Address
    Guinedilda 2 St, Cervera, Lleida
  • Web
  • Visiting Hours
  • What to see
    Crucifix from 14 century

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