History

Coat of arms of the House of Alba

He currently belongs to the “Colexio Nosa Señora da Antigua, Monforte de Lemos” Foundation. He was commissioned to build the Cardinal D. Rodrigo de Castro Osorio (1523-1600), being a cardinal of Seville. This Cardinal is the son of the III Countess of Lemos Dª Beatriz de Castro, was born in Valladolid in 1523. He studied at the University of Salamanca and graduated in Law and Canons. He accompanied Philip II to Flanders and England. In 1553 he was secretary in Rome, of D. Fernando Ruiz de Castro, 4th Count Lemos, his stepbrother. In 1556 he is ordained priest and runs several parishes in Galicia. Bishop, successively, of Zamora and Cuenca. In 1581 he was promoted to the archiepiscopal seat of Seville and two years later was appointed Cardinal by Gregorio XIII. In his visit to Santiago de Compostela, 1590, he conceived the idea of ​​building here, on the plot of his elders, a small Escorial, which was a center of culture for Galicia, a family pantheon and an art museum. The works have already begun, he only manages to see the foundations, since he died in 1600 at the age of 77. He arranged to be buried in this his school, and here is in a niche next to the gospel, under a statue of him in a prayerful attitude, the work of Juan de Bolonia

Coat of arms of Cardinal Rodrigo de Castro

The Jesuits, members of the Society of Jesus, were chosen from the beginning not only to direct the construction of the church and the remaining building, but also to run the College. They will be here until 1767 when they are expelled by order of Carlos III. It was a peremptory order, which did not allow them to take anything to the 11 religious who resided here. His stay lasted 174 years. They wanted to erase all vestiges of the Jesuits and that explains why their logo (JHS) was erased or scraped from all the places where it appeared: altarpiece, pulpit, cloister, exterior doors. Since then and until 1873, the Piarists come, the College The Cardinal was dedicated more or less fortunately to various tasks: Royal Seminary, Royal Center for Humanities and Fine Arts, Provincial Institute of Lugo. This period lasted 106 years. The building was a ruin. In the words of the architect D. Francisco Perez de los Cobos, commissioned by the Board, summarizes the situation in a report, which says:

“The building, as it is today, is completely uninhabitable and it truly surprises that there is even a student who comes to seek education in a school under these conditions. There are defeated vaults, uneven walls, all the roof threatens to collapse; two patios, one in ruins and the other unfinished, leave no doubt that in a very short time the building will disappear and with it the teaching “.


Coat of arms of the Pious Schools PP. Piarists

It is then when the attorney of the Duke of Alba, D. José Guitián and García makes the pertinent steps so that they take charge of the School the Escolapios, members of the Order of the Pious Schools, founded by the Aragonese San José de Calasanz. For 6 years these religious had taken charge, to exercise their charism, of the Monastery of S. Rosendo, in Celanova (Orense and 1867). An agreement was reached and the contract was signed by the Count of Lemos, D. Jacobo Fitz James Stuart and the Provincial of the Piarists, Julián Viñas, on January 31, 1873. They take charge of the School On March 18 of the same year and in October-November the course begins with 153 Primary students. At 3 years the Piarists were close to leaving school and city, stealthily, by the unsustainable economic situation, since neither the Duke, nor the City wanted to pay what was stipulated in the contract. Fortunately, an agreement was reached and we are still here. The Escolapios finished the works, they carry out the maintenance, they make improvements and they conserve the building, as it is now. We are here, in 2019, 146 years.