From the nave of the Gospel, which was deeply transformed in the 18th century and has partly recovered its original state, we can highlight a small Altar dedicated to San José (Saint Joseph) with an alcove containing the image of the Saint, as well as an oil canvas of “Santa Inés” attributed to Cristóbal Vela Cobo, or an “Adoration of the Magi“, a copy of an original by Rubens. But the Chapel of the Tabernacle is particularly interesting, which can be accessed through a simple round opening. It is a square space covered by a vault over pendentives, decorated with the images of the four Evangelists. In the centre there is an altarpiece with the Tabernacle, where a landscape canvas representing the “Last Supper” stands out. We can also highlight two canvases by Alonso Enríquez de Navarra representing “Santa Inés” and “San Juan” (Saint John) on one side and “San Juan Bautista” (Saint John Baptist) and “Santa Bárbara” on the other.
The apse of the Gospel is occupied by the Chapel of the Benavides, commissioned by the Captain of the Spanish Army Alonso de Benavides, born in the parish of Santa Marina. The altarpiece, made in golden wood, was made by Sebastián Vidal, who imposed a clear Classicist character. It is divided in three sections. On the sides there are paintings by Antonio del Castillo, representing “San Juan” and “San Francisco“. In the central alcove we can see a “Cristo Resucitado” (Resurrected Christ), after which the brotherhood El Resucitado (The Resurrected) is named, by Juan Manuel Miñarro. On the right we can see the “Virgen de la Alegría” (Virgin of Happiness), by Juan Martínez Cerrillo, which also gives her name to the brotherhood, and on the other side, the “Ángel“, which accompanies Christ in the procession along the streets of Cordoba on Easter Sunday.
In the Main Altar we can highlight the “Virgen del Rosario” (Virgin of the Rosary), an anonymous work from the first half of the 17th century representing the young Virgin with Baby Jesus on her left arm and a rosary on the right one. On both sides there are canvases attributed to Cristóbal Vela Cobo representing the archangels “San Gabriel” and “San Rafael“. It is thought that both works, almost identical, originally represented Archangel Saint Michael, and that they were “retouched” later.
On the apse of the Epistle, which has preserved its medieval appearance to a great extent, we can highlight a small altar decorated with Solomon columns, in whose alcove there is an image of “Santa Marina“, made by Blanca de Alvear in 1968. This sculpture, despite being modern, matches perfectly with its surroundings as it is hieratic and old fashioned in general. From the canvases decorating the space we can mention an “Inmaculada” from the beginning of the 18th century, which is not well preserved.
On the side of the Epistle we can highlight, first of all, two altarpieces located on both sides of the access door. The first of them is the Altar of San Juan Bautista (Saint John Baptist), made in polychrome wood, and it is an anonymous work from the 17th century. In the centre a beautiful canvas of “San Juan Bautista“, flanked by paintings of “San José“, “San Antonio de Padua“, “San Francisco” and “San Blas“, by José Saló Junquet, copying the originals spread throughout different collections. At the top of the altarpiece, there is an “Inmaculada” attributed to Antonio del Castillo from 1645.
The second altarpiece is known as Altar of Our Lady of the Light, which is named after its central image by Alonso Gómez de Sandoval from the middle of the 18th century. Over it, there is a painting on copper of “San Sebastián“, representing him at the moment of his martyrdom.
We will finish our visit with the Chapel of the Orozco, whose founder we still do not know exactly. The entrance is very interesting, as it consists of a pointed arch framed by an alfiz, whose spandrels are decorated with Mudejar plasterwork, where we can highlight two Calatrava Crosses, an order to which the sponsor probably belonged. Further up, we can see the use of stalactite work.
The inside of the chapel is a square space covered by a cantilevered vault, whose centre has a sort of painted big flower on. There are numerous elements which have been transformed since the restoration carried out not long ago. We can highlight an exceptional “Inmaculada” by Antonio del Castillo, probably one of the most outstanding painters who worked in Cordoba in the 17th century, and fortunately, this church has some of his works.
If you are wondering what to do in Córdoba, we recommend you visit the Fernandine Churches hiring one of our guided tours. We will explain there a special chapter dedicated to the Church of Santa Marina. Choose to do high quality sightseeing with qualified staff. Do not hesitate, ArtenCórdoba is the best option.
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