Micalet Tower, Valencia in Spain
This is a bronze colored, metal fridge magnet souvenir of Mica let Tower, in Valencia, Spain. The Valencia Cathedral was called Iglesias Mayor in the early days of the Reconquista, and then by virtue of the papal concession of 16 October 1866, it was called the Basilica Metropolitan. It is situated in the center of the ancient Roman city where some believe the temple of Diana stood. In Gothic times, it seems to have been dedicated to the Holy Savior; the Cid dedicated it to the Blessed Virgin; King James I of Aragon did likewise, leaving in the main chapel the image of the Blessed Virgin which he carried with him and is reputed to be the one now preserved in the sacristy. The Moorish mosque, which had been converted into a Christian church by the conqueror, was deemed unworthy of the title of the cathedral of Valencia, and in 1262 Bishop Andres de Alba at laid the cornerstone of the new Gothic building, with three naves; these reach only to the choir of the present building. Bishop Vidal de Blames built the chapter hall, and James I added the tower, called El Miguelete or Micalet Tower because it was blessed on St. Michael's day in 1418. The tower is about 58 m high and topped with a belfry (1660-1736).
Other Valencia Cathedral Additions
In the 15th century the dome was added and the naves extended back of the choir, uniting the building to the tower and forming a main entrance. Archbishop Luis Alfonso de los Cameros began the building of the main chapel in 1674; the walls were decorated with marbles and bronzes in the Baroque style of that period. At the beginning of the 18th century the German Conrad Rudolphus built the facade of the main entrance. The other two doors lead into the transept; one, that of the Apostles in pure pointed Gothic, dates from the 14th century, the other is that of the Palau. The additions made to the back of the cathedral detract from its height. The 18th century-restoration rounded the pointed arches, covered the Gothic columns with Corinthian pillars, and redecorated the walls. The dome has no lantern, its plain ceiling being pierced by two large side windows. There are four chapels on either side, besides that at the end and those that open into the choir, the transept, and the sanctuary. It contains many paintings by eminent artists. A silver reredos, which was behind the altar, was carried away in the war of 1808, and converted into coin to meet the expenses of the campaign. There are two paintings by Francisco Goya in the San Francesco chapel. Behind the Chapel of the Blessed Sacrament is a small Renaissance chapel built by Calisto's III. Beside the cathedral is the chapel dedicated to the Our Lady of the Forsaken.