Monday, December 13, 2010

Photo of the Week--12/13/10

I selected this photo of the Ingreja do Carmo in Lisbon not because of any particularly interesting architectural detail, but rather because the building exists in the first place. Of course you see the sky through the window, but if you look more closely you'll also see it peeking through the trees, too. That's a lot of sky to be seen, and that's because this church was damaged during the Lisbon earthquake of 1755, which some scientists estimate to have measured around 9.0 on the Richter scale. Besides killing between 10,000 and 100,000 people, the earthquake destroyed 85 percent of the buildings in Lisbon and caused tsunamis that were noted as far away as Cornwall, England (see next week's photo). This convent church had its roof collapse, destroying a 5000-volume library, and it was never rebuilt. It served briefly as a military billet, and now is an archaeological museum. Unfortunately it was close when we went to visit, so we only got this view from the outside; luckily it was still a fascinating view.

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