Hospital Real de Todos os Santos (All Saints
Royal Hospital) was a major hospital
in Lisbon, Portugal.
hospital was built between 1492 and 1504 and was destroyed in the
earthquake, along with most of the city.
In 1492, after obtaining papal
King John II
building of one of the most important civil and charitative
infrastructures in old Lisbon, the Hospital Real de Todos os
Santos. The Hospital was finished in 1504, during the reign of
King Manuel I
. The construction
of the Hospital was part of a Royal campaign to centralise the
health assistance of the most important cities of the Kingdom into
general hospitals. Large hospitals were also founded in Coimbra
(1515) and Braga
Location and architecture
façade of All-Saints Hospital occupied
the whole eastern side of Rossio
Square. Today's Praça da Figueira (Fig Tree Square) is located over of the area
occupied by the old Hospital.
Old descriptions and excavations indicate that the building had a
groundfloor and two upper storeys and was organised into several
square-shaped wings with central courtyards around the Hospital
Chapel. The Chapel was located in middle of the ensemble and had a
massive tower in the eastern end of the nave
The main façade of the Hospital had an arched gallery with buttresses
in its ground floor. The entrance of the
Chapel was located in the middle of the Hospital façade and was
reached by a monumental stairway. Contemporary drawings show that
the portal of the Chapel was a magnificent work in Manueline
style, the Portuguese version of late
typical of King Manuel I
of the Hospital were granted by King Manuel I in 1504, and were
based on the rules of contemporary hospitals in Florence and Siena.
Initially the Hospital had three infirmaries (enfermarias
located in the upper storey, where the ill were treated. The
groundfloor was occupied by the Hospital personnel (around 50
people, many of whom lived in the building). The first floor housed
dependencies like the kitchen, refectory and pharmacy, as well as
rooms for abandoned children (called expostos
and the mentally ill.
Initially, it is estimated that the Hospital was capable of housing
around 250 people, with 2500-3000 people being treated every year.
Even though the premises were victim of several fires, the
facilities were greatly expanded until the middle of 18th century,
when the Hospital had around 12 infirmaries. It was the most
important health institution in the city and an important centre
for the practical study of anatomy and medicine in Portugal.
The Hospital was initially administered by a provedor
appointed by the King, but after 1564 the Hospital was run by the
Irmandade da Misericórdia
(Brotherhood of the Mercy), an
important Portuguese religious charity established in 1498 that
exists to this day.
changed with the massive 1755 Earthquake, in which a great part of the city was destroyed by
the quake itself and the fire that followed.
was worsened by the fact that the All Saints Hospital was greatly
damaged, and the surviving patients and wounded by the quake were
housed in undamaged convents and palaces. The government of
King Joseph I, headed by the
Pombal, quickly started rebuilding the Hospital, which was
soon treating the ill again.
For some reason, possibly related to financial constraints, the
Hospital was never fully rebuilt. The Hospital facilities were
transferred in 1775 to the building of the Colégio de Santo
, a Jesuit
college that was
confiscated by the Crown after the Jesuit Order was expelled from Portugal
in 1759. The new Hospital was renamed Hospital de São
, paying hommage to King Joseph I
. The remnants of the
All Saints Hospital were demolished and a new square was created,
the Praça da
Figueira (Square of the Fig Tree).
References and external links