Church of Santa Marina de Aguas Santas: The building.
The floor of the Church of Santa Marina de Aguas Santas (Saint Marine of Holy Waters) has three large naves, and the central one is wider and higher than the side ones. The apse consists of three polygonal apses, which can be seen from the outside, and the three of them are reinforced by buttresses.
The naves of the Church of Santa Marina are connected among them through five pointed arches supported by big pillars, which have two columns and two pilasters attached. Over the pointed arches we can see the typical reinforced wall, with other five blind round arches. Inside them, we can see some small lighting openings, covered by a round arch covering a second arch, in this case, polylobed, which is supported by small columns with plain shaft. The reinforced wall supports the wooden ceiling, reinforced with horizontal beams, with paired braces, decorated with simple and fine Arabesques. The triumphant arch leading to the Main Altar is decorated with a sort of crochet, whereas the one leading to the apse on the side of the Epistle has a moulding with an alternation of small columns and scotias. The two apses mentioned, as well as the section preceding each of them, are covered by a Gothic ribbed vault with keystones decorated with vegetable elements.
The apse on the side of the Gospel, which was originally Chapel of the Benavides, is covered by a barrel vault in a semi-dome, made in the middle of the 17th century, and decorated with geommetric elements typical of the time.
The main façade is characterized by four big buttresses finished in a pinnacle which divides it in three parts, in the same place as the inside naves, that is, they give a hint of what can be seen inside. In the centre there is the entrance, leading to the foot of the central nave. It consists of an opening with a pointed arch, whose archivolts have mouldings and are supported by capitals decorated with vegetable and zoomorphic motifs, mixed with a small continuous frieze, which is a kind of extension of them. The pointed arch is framed by a Muslum alfiz, as well as the small roof supported by round modillions. The rose window is not medieval, but it was made in one of the latest restorations.
The façade on the side of the Epistle follows the same scheme as the main one, although it has the peculiarity of some birds facing each other all along the decorative frieze.
The façade on the side of the Gospel is previous to the other ones, from the middle of the 14th century; thus, it has more developed stylistic features. It is made of a pointed arch, with an intrados decorated with saw teeth and moulded archivolts. The capitals are supported by small thin columns and decoration of vegetable and zoomorphic motifs, and the decoration is mixed, as in the main façade, with a continuous frieze which, in this case, continues up to the base of the arch itself. A high and thin gable, decorated in its sides with diamond ends, covers the pointed arch and is flanked by two big buttresses. A small sculpture of Santa Marina is at the front, located in an alcove with a pointed arch, which has another polylobed one inside.
The tower was made by Hernán Ruiz II the Young, and it was sponsored by Bishop Leopoldo de Austria in the middle of the 16th century. Hence we can appreciate his crest in the last section. The square tower is divided in two parts, the first one with barely any decoration. The second one is characterized by the use of three pilasters on each side with Ionic capital. Between them we can see round openings with a decorated keystone and bells inside. The upper part has a vault with cupola.
If you are wondering what to visit in Córdoba, a good option would be the Fernandine Churches, choosing one of our guided tours. This way, you will learn everything about the Church of Santa Marina. Choosing to do high quality sightseeing is choosing ArtenCórdoba.