El Escorial

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El Escorial


a city in Spain, in Madrid Province, New Castile. Situated in the foothills of the Sierra de Guadarrama. Population, about 4,000 (1970).

El Escorial is the site of Philip II’s palace-monastery of San Lorenzo del Escorial, generally called the Escorial (1563-84, architects J. B. de Toledo and J. de Herrera). The Escorial is an isolated, severe, and majestic rectangular ensemble with towers at its corners. It contains 16 inner courtyards, a square domed church that is the compositional center of the ensemble, a palace, a seminary, a monastery library, and a mausoleum.

The Escorial is built of bluish gray granite; the only building in the ensemble that has exterior decoration is the baroque mausoleum (completed 1654, architect G. B. Crescenzi). The Escorial contains paintings and sculptures from the 16th to 18th centuries, including works by F. Zurbarán, El Greco, J. Ribera, D. Velásquez, and Titian. A pavilion known as the Casita del Principe was added to the ensemble in 1772 (architect J. de Villanueva).


Bertrand, L. Histoire d’Escorial. Paris, 1932.
References in periodicals archive ?
Dubai: El Escorial Library and the Juma Al Majid Centre for Culture and Heritage are to sign a memorandum of understanding to preserve manuscripts.
El Escorial Library, located in central Spain in San Lorenzo de El Escorial near Madrid, houses more than 4,700 manuscripts in numerous languages and 40,000 printed books.
Juma Al Majid and I met Bishop Juan Luis in El Escorial Library to discuss cooperation with them regarding ancient manuscripts," said Daghestani.
Under the agreement, a team from the Juma Al Majid Centre will visit El Escorial Library to make copies of manuscripts.
For those unfamiliar with the Kitab al-I'tibar, the surviving, incomplete manuscript of the text was preserved in the Escorial Library in Spain, where it was first reconstructed by Hartwig Derenbourg in 1880.
The projected edition of the saint's complete works, undertaken in the 1570s in conjunction with the Escorial collections, represents one of the three great typographical endeavors sponsored by Philip II, along with the Antwerp Polyglot Bible (1569-72) edited by the great humanist, and later chief organizer of the Escorial library, Benito Arias Montano (ca.
This view became so generalized that in the eighteenth century the French Bollandist monks, feeding on Philip II's black legend, disparagingly called the Escorial library a monumental "bibliotaph," a reliquary for books, a "great tomb of books where manuscripts rot away like corpses": Bouza, 1988, 81 (also in Bouza, 1998, 168).
This was, it seems, the copy of the work Averroes used, and it remained in Spain until it burned in the fire of 1671 at the Escorial library.