Basílica de Nuestra Señora del Coro

31 de Agosto Kalea, 46, 20003 Donostia, Gipuzkoa, Spain

Simona Bertolaso



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Santa Maria del Coro Church in San Sebastian is one of the most emblematic churches in the city.
The start of the construction works –resulting in its current appearance- dates back to 1743. But Santa Maria church was already there before that time, and it was attached to the city fortification walls. The design is attributed to Pedro Ignacio de Lizardi, although he was in turn influenced by Miguel de Salezán and Domingo de Yarza. On the 27th of April of the above-mentioned year, the foundation stone of the building was laid, so the commemoration of this day became one of the most popular events in the city and a holiday for all San Sebastian inhabitants. The works lasted 21 years until, in 1764, construction was finished.
Basilica is an impressive Baroque work dating from the 18th century in the Old Town’s busy Calle Mayor.

This work of art has a particularly interesting Baroque facade of Churrigueresque hues with its large sculpture of Saint Sebastian Martyr, and an altarpiece dedicated to Our Lady of the Choir, the city’s patron saint.

Alongside the baptismal font is a cross-shaped sculpture by Eduardo Chillida. The Basilica was built between 1743 and 1774, on the foundations of an earlier church that occupied the same space. The main door runs in a straight line to the entrance to the Buen Pastor Cathedral. People christened in Santa María are known as “josemaritarras” (literally: “those belonging to Jesus and Mary”), and are mentioned in the hymn to San Sebastián.

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