Saints Cosmas and Damian’s Square

Rúa Cabeza de Manzaneda, 29, 32005

Known for being the site for Baltar's nativity scene, it was during the Middle Ages one of the city gates.

ES Plaza de los santos Cosme y Damián | GL Praza dos santos Cosme e Damián

Small square in the place known in the Middle Ages as «Arcade Fountain», the former site of one of the gates of the city.

A fountain of modern construction stands out, topped by a sculpture of children’s themes by Antonio Faílde. In one of its sides you may see the chapel that gives it its name: Saints Cosmas and Damian. This 16th-century building houses one of the most curious museums, the Arturo Baltar exhibition space and Baltar’s nativity scene: over a hundred figures of clay that recreate traditional scenes of the Galician countryside and the Ourense of yore.

The chapel was commissioned in 1521 by the surgeon master Juan de Lares in honour of Saints Cosmas and Damian, patrons of the medical profession. Years later, the building was in charge to the City Council, and became a school for orphans. Its Plateresque façade is topped by triangular pine kernel; on one side there is a small bell tower. The gate, decorated with basket-handle arch, has two sculptures under a canopy: the one on the right, a man with a lizard coming out of his mouth, is symbol for disease; and the one on the left, a man sitting with his knee uncovered. The keystone shows the patron saints, and in the corners the founder’s coat of arms is represented.