CEMENTERIO DE SAN RAFAEL Y SAN ROQUE

SANTA CRUZ DE TENERIFE
- Etnografía. Cementerios -




As he writes in work u2018History of Santa Cruz de Tenerife u2019, the famous historian Alejandro Cioranescu: u2018The last service that a community can and should do to its members is to ensure its final rest u2019.

Not until the end of the eighteenth century, when by obligation of the Royal Order of April 3, 1787, all the cities and municipalities of Spain would be obliged to build extramural cemeteries in the cities. A law subsequently amended in 1804.

At this time, Santa Cruz de Tenerife was going through trimesters of becoming the new capital city, so the municipal economy was far from having resources to obtain works that were not totally expendable for the city. The burials were carried out in the surroundings or in the ossuaries located in the churches, as is the case of the Parish Church of Matriz de Ntra. The concept of the Hermitage of Regla is prayed, so construction was not convenient. of a cemetery as marked by law. This work came from the hands of one of the deadliest epidemics the city has gone through: yellow fever. In 1810, the outbreak of those affected by this disease and the deaths caused by their constant contagion (more than 1,600 according to the writings), caused the saturation of church cemeteries, mainly of the hermitage of Regla, so the The council decided very quickly to locate the capital's cemetery on the edge of the San Sebasti Streets and the aforementioned hermitage in November. This lot belonged to a ...


This important cemetery of the capital Santacrucera, presents an irregular plant, due to the different expansions suffered over time. It is surrounded by a perimeter wall about 3 meters high, built in the 19th century and subsequently restored. The enclosure is accessed through a cover on the north side, with three openings for the Catholic section and one for the Protestant.

The interior is divided into two distinct parts; the first and original one that corresponds to that of Catholic profession and the Protestant cemetery, of smaller dimensions and in a higher position due to the adaptation to orography.

In the Catholic part the spaces are distributed in two sections around the main boulevard until reaching the chapel. The arrangement of the graves is diffuse and multiple, both in their organization and in their form, size and material.

There are very simple burials established symmetrically in canter to which they share space with large pantheons and mausoleums, whose decoration follows the bourgeois end of the s. XIX and beginning of the XX, with a lot of decorative richness: reliefs, sculptures, metal shields, more complex architectural mausoleums, etc.

From the main street there are two clearly identified entrances that give access to the different graves. In the plan view of the Protestant cemetery, we can appreciate its rectangular shape. Burials are characterized by their simplicity with a unique decorative element: vertical funeral steles with ...


The main access door to the Catholic cemetery was built under a framework of canter, and the original door came from the old door that closed the Customs chapel, which was left over from works undertaken at the Treasury offices. For the access to the Protestant cemetery, a double-leaf cover framed in stone segments is presented to form a cantilevered arch that supports a narrow entablature topped by a polygonal front with a vegetal decoration.

The perimeter wall will be rebuilt on a masonry to whitewashed with mortar and painted white at present, topped off by Cordoba-type battlements with regular separation in the Catholic section.


Decree 99/2006, of July 11.

Degree of Protection: Integral.

BIC Monument and BIC Monument Environment 14. PGO Santa Cruz de Tenerife.


- CIORANESCU, A. (1979). u2018History of Santa Cruz de Tenerife u2019, vol. III (1803-1977). Ed. CE Savings Banks, Santa Cruz de Tenerife; pp. 385-390.

- COLA BEN TEZ, L. (2013). u2018 Historical Route of Santa Cruz de Santiago de Tenerife u2019. Ed. City Hall of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Santa Cruz de Tenerife; pp. 61-63.

- GARC A PULIDO, D. (2000). u2018 San Rafael and San Roque. A graveyard with history (1810-1916) u2019. Ed. Santa Cruz de Tenerife City Council and Autonomous Culture Organization, Santa Cruz de Tenerife.

- RAM REZ SANCHEZ, M. (2012). u2018In loving memory: Last Writing and Memory in the English Cemeteries of the Canary Islands u2019, in Proceedings of the XX Colloquium of American Canarian History . Ed. Island Council of Gran Canaria Las Palmas, of Gran Canaria; p. 679.

Editorial and research team: Architecture Unit of the CICOP Foundation.

Miguel ngel Fern ndez Matr n.

Jos Luis D will read Mart nez.

Sendy Hern ndez lvarez.

Photograph: Jos M. Bossini Ruiz.


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