Archaelogical Museum – Former Bishop’s Palace

Rúa Santa María, 1, 32005

See on the map

mapour@xunta.es

museos.xunta.gal/es/arqueoloxico-ourense

This Historic-Artistic Monument is the most complete example of Romanesque civil architecture in the city.

The Ourense Provincial Archaeological Museum occupies the building that was the Bishop’s Palace. It is one of the best preserved civil monumental ensembles in Romanesque style, and was declared a Historic-Artistic Monument in 1931. Its structure is a faithful testimony of the development of the city, with Roman, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and modern elements. Its construction began in the 12th century and played an important role in the medieval urban organization.

The museum is currently closed for renovations. However, you can visit part of its funds in the Sculpture Anthology in San Francisco.

The site was already occupied in Roman times, as evidenced by the discovered building remains, and subsequently by a high-medieval necropolis.

The present building was built in the 12th century, and its main façade is now, after many reforms in the surroundings, a Romanesque courtyard. Over the centuries it underwent modifications and extensions that altered its general appearance. So, the added elements are Gothic (tower of Santa Maria), Renaissance (garden galleries), Baroque (the main entrance) and modern (arcades in Bispo Carrascosa street).

The Archaeological Museum, founded in 1895, finally settled in this building in 1951, undergoing a restoration, according to a project by Pons Sorolla in 1960-1968.