A Visit to Medieval Segovia

On my recent administrative trip to Madrid, I had the weekend mostly free and spent a day in Segovia, which I’d never visited before. What struck me most is the way in which the city seems to preserve, better than anywhere else I’ve visited, the sense of space that would have been operative in the medieval town.

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The Jewish quarter is still narrow, winding, and jammed up against the cathedral. The signs for Calle Barrio Nuevo, a typical street name for the main street in a Jewish quarter, are overhung by gargoyles.

The plasterwork in the Alcázar was not over-restored to the hilt in the 19th and 20th centuries, as it was in so many other palaces.

 

(The synagogue, however, now the Church of Corpus Christi, is a 1902 reconstruction after the original was destroyed in a fire.)

There are still active huertas, or garden plots, outside of the city walls in the shadow of the castle…

…and a cemetery (excavated, if inexpertly explained) across the river valley.

Where things were built up and changed, there are still traces of what had been there before:

And finally, a frivolous selection of other images of the town:

 

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