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The cathedral archdeacon's 16th-century residence was built on top of a ruined 12th-century building, over the ancient Roman walls of the city. The cloister, Renaissance patio and its Gothic-style central fountain are outstanding period pieces. Modernist architect Lluís Domènech i Muntaner added a witty postbox by the front door. The swallows carved on it represents the hope for quick delivery of justice, whilst the tortoise is a symbol for obstructions. Climb up to the top to enjoy beautiful views of the courtyard below and the surrounding areas.
Santa Llúcia Chapel can be reached via Barcelona Cathedral's cloister as well. Where the Gothic cathedral is now found, there used to be a Romanesque one, dedicated to Saint Lúcia, patron saint of dressmakers and protector of sight. It's a relatively simple construction with a rectangular interior. It's open during mass, if you would like to visit the inside.
Gaze at the ancient frescoes that depict scenes from the aftermath of the Catalan-French resistance of 1809. In these pictures one can witness the guillotine of the Catalan resistance leaders. While three paintings show five Catalan leaders waiting to be hanged, one has a still of the three agitators who started the uprising of the Catalans. They surrendered only to hanged later. At this square, apart from the history that can be gauged, one can also witness the passers-by and get a taste of the local scene.
For centuries, Casa del Degà was home for deans of the cathedral. This 14th-century house next door to Casa de l'Ardiaca faced a tragedy in 1420 when the structure was damaged. One of the deans, Jaume Estela, commissioned the attractive Renaissance façade in 1548; however, he died before work was completed and his successor, Bernat d'Aguilar, oversaw its conclusion. That's why both of their coats-of-arms feature by the entrance.
In addition to being a fine example of Gothic architecture, this 11th-century building is of great historical interest as well. Casa de la Pia Almoina also known as the Casa de la Canonja was first the headquarters of a charity organization that used to provide a free lunch every day the city's deserving poor, hence its popular name, Pía Almoina (the compassionate alms). While touring this structure do take note of its impressive architecture.
The chapel that belongs to the Palacio Real Mayor (Main Royal Palace) is located on a square that has borne witness to countless historical events. It is purely Gothic in style and was built at the beginning of the 14th Century at the behest of Count James II. It was built on top of what was a Romanesque chapel dedicated to Saint Mary, which itself was built upon the ancient Roman city walls. There is a single nave with chapels between the lateral buttresses and impressive stained-glass windows.
You can see how various architectural styles have evolved over the course of the last 1000 years in this singular building. It was originally built on top of the city's Roman walls and you can still see the remains of a Roman defensive wall tower in the façade. The interior is Romanesque with a courtyard in the center. You will notice some Romanesque windows dating from the 13th Century and some Gothic ones dating from the 15th Century. The neoclassical façade was an 18th Century creation by Josep Mas.