Arch of Santa Maria

The Arch of Santa Maria is located at the Paseo del Espolón.  This was part of the ancient wall around the city and in 1553 it was remodeled by Juan Vallejo and Francisco de Colonia to make a triumphal arch in honor of the Emperor Carlos V. Local white stone was used. It looks like a castle with two tall circular towers. There is a crown of four small towers on top of the building. In the central part there are several niches that contain statues of people who were important in the history of Castile. The lower body contains the statues of Count Diego Porcelos, Judge Lain Calvo, and Judge Nuño Rasura. The upper part has the statues of Carlos V, El Cid, and Count Fernan Gonzalez.  Above them is a statue of the Guardian Angel, flanked by figures of macebearers. Lastly, at the very top is the statue of Santa Maria, the patron saint of Burgos. The sculptor of these figures was Ochoa de Arteaga. The building has a Pharmacy Museum and a place to hold art exhibitions.  There is a central room with a large mural by the artist Vela Zanetti that honors Count Fernan Gonzalez. The Hall of Poridad has a wonderful Mudejar coffered ceiling, and some items related to El Cid, such as a reproduction of his famous sword Tiz. The building was declared a National Historic-Artistic Monument in 1943.