Door of the Milk
On the western side of the Mosque-Cathedral, a few metres away from the northern wall of the Orange tree courtyard, we can find the Side door of the Milk, a side door whose original look we do not know about, although we preserve to a great extent the structure made by Hernán Ruiz I the Old, when he remodelled it in the times of Bishop Juan Daza, around the years 1505-1510.
According to its structure and decoration, it is a construction consisting of two sections. At the front of the first of them there is a narrow lintelled alcove decorated, in its higher part, with mouldings forming a sort of ogee framed in alfiz, crowned in its centre by a simple flouron. Further up, the same scheme of ogee with fine mouldings is repeated, but in this case it finishes with an elegant cornice, decorated with zoomorphic and anthropomorphic figures, leading to the second section. At the top of the ensemble there is a round arch which is a bit wider than the portico at the entrance, ornamented with curve mouldings where concave and convex shapes are mixed in the interior.
There are numerous theories and references made by historians and scholars about the monument and this old Side door of the Milk. It is said that during the poorest times in Córdoba, those women who could not look after their new born children left them on the step of this side door, hoping that someone close to the Cathedral Chapter of the Mosque-Cathedral, and therefore, affluent people, would take interest in them. It is also known, and by the way unbelievable, the story of a herd of pigs which one night passed near the place and jumped over the children, killing many of them. The story upset the city and even Dean Juan Fernández de Córdoba erected the House of the Foundling for this purpose.
On the other hand, there is also a theory that suggests that the Side door of the Milk got its name because nursing mothers used to seek shelter inside when there was bad weather, waiting to be hired for the Cot House, a charitable organisation.
If you wish to know the Side door of the Milk and therefore the Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba, do not hesitate to hire one of our guided tours. We are experts in the interpretation of the historic heritage from Córdoba. If you have chosen to do sightseeing in Córdoba, choose a high quality option, choose ArtenCórdoba.