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Unidentified photographer 
Cintra [Sintra] 
1850-1854 
  
Salted paper print 
41.5 x 31.0 cm (image) 
  
The Royal Collection 
RCIN 2700727 
  
 
LL/91094 
  
Photograph showing the Arches Yard, chapel and clock tower of the Pena National Palace at Sintra, Portugal, with two local men sitting at the top and bottom of a stone staircase, both facing the camera. The site, originally occupied by a small Medieval chapel, grew into a monastery populated by monks of the order of St Jerome until the mid-18th century when severe lighting and then an earthquake reduced the building to ruins. King Ferdinand II of Portugal (1816-85), consort of Queen Maria II of Portugal (1819-53) and first cousin of Queen Victoria as well as of Prince Albert, acquired the abandoned monastery and transformed it, between 1842 and 1854, into a palace with the help of Baron Wilhelm Ludwig von Eschwege (1777-1855), a German mining engineer, army officer and amateur architect. The palace, considered one of the finest examples of Romantic architecture, was made, together with its park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995. In typical Romantic taste, the palace presents a fusion and mixture of eclectic styles, such as Neo-Gothic, Neo-Manueline, Moorish Revival and Reneissance Revival. The square clock tower with bartizans is, for example, a clear reference to the Tower of Belém, a fortified structure built near Lisbon in the early 16th century in the Portuguese Manueline style, named after King Manuel I of Portugal (1469-1521). 
 

 
  
 
  
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