Today we´re going to talk about the icon of Barcelona. The magnificent Gaudi’s Basilica in Barcelona attracts more than four million visitors a year and it’s considered the most visited monument in Spain. We share with you our list with 6 secrets and interesting facts of Sagrada Familia you may have never heard or read.
In fact, the church is the subject of myriads of articles, books, blogs, documentaries, etc. However, the history of Sagrada Familia is so interesting and complex that it could fill the pages of hundreds of other books and articles.
1) REVOLUTIONARIES TRIED TO BLOW IT UP IN 1936
The church of Sagrada Familia was damaged during the Spanish Civil War. Fortunately, despite the fire that burned the priest house, destroyed Gaudí’s plans and drawings and shattered the plaster scale models, the church was saved. The group of revolutionaries that tried to blow it up, didn’t manage to detonate the explosives. The head of the Cultural Heritage of the Catalan government saved it at the last moment from its complete destruction.
2) GAUDI’S MASTERPIECE HAS A 7,5 M BASIS
Sagrada Familia’s design is based on a number: 7,5 meters. Christian denominations consider seven to be a holy number because Genesis says that God rested on the 7th day and man was created on the 6th day. Moreover, the number 7 is a highly spiritual number that is associated with intuition, mysticism, inner wisdom, and a deep inward knowing. The number 8 in the Bible represents a new beginning, meaning a new order or creation, and man’s true ‘born again’ event when he is resurrected from the dead into eternal life. Symbology is everywhere in Sagrada Familia.
3) THE SCULPTOR OF THE PASSION FAÇADE LIVED IN THE TEMPLE
Josep Mª Subirachs, the sculptor who created the Passion façade was an atheist who only accepted the job, after the board of Sagrada Familia’s association granted him the permit to live in the church. He reinterpreted Gaudì’s idea for the Passion Façade and created an impressive sculptural work of Jesus’s crucifixion. At the same time, he placed along his work references to art masters such Rodin, Dürer, or even Dalí, among others.
4) THERE ARE TWO SCULPTURES HONOURING GAUDI
There are sculptures portraying the architect Antoni Gaudí, on the two completed façades. On the nativity façade, Gaudí is portrayed as Saint Joseph. On the Passion façade, the architect is represented on the left of the Veronica scene and depicted as Saint John, the apostle who never abandoned Jesus.
5) SAGRADA FAMILIA’S PILLARS ARE LIKE NO OTHER
The architect Antoni Gaudí created the double twisted column, a pillar that synthetizes all the previous orders used by architects since ancient times. This column reflect how Gaudí wanted to pursuit aesthetical and structural perfection. It’s a combination of a simple cylindrical pillar, the classic striated Greek column and the Baroque Solomonic column and its broadly used all around Sagrada Familia structure.
Symbolically, they represent the ascension of the saints towards heaven and the descend of the angels to greet and meet them.
6) A GLASS ELEVATOR WILL TAKE VISITORS (ALMOST) TO THE TOP OF THE HIGHEST TOWER
Jesus Christ tower will give access to the highest part of the Basilica. The tower will be 172,5 m high and its currently under construction. Within the tower there going to be placed a spiral staircase and a glass elevator, that will take the visitors to the upper part of the spire. However, the way to the top will be only accessible by foot.
The interior of Jesus Christ´s tower will represent the creation of the universe, and the highest meters, done on foot, will represent the struggle, sacrifice and work necessaries to reach the highest spiritual goal.