Foto: Jolle

Church next to the Escornalbou castle

Escornalbou Castle

Escornalbou Castle is a stately mansion with castle board monastery, situated in the former territory of Escornalbou (derived from the Latin Cornu Bovis, “the ox horn”) Riudecanyes today, in the Baix Camp.

It is situated on a plateau of the hill of Santa Barbara or Mola, to 649 m altitude, on the way to the first spurs of the hills of the Priorat, south side of the Sierra de L'Argentera, resident of the Mola Colldejou .

He is a former Augustinian monastery, rebuilt, not restored, early twentieth century, particularly between 1912 and 1926, by Eduard Toda resonate Güell (1855 - 1941), author of articles and books on history, travel and politics , among others. In addition, he served as a diplomat in China and vice-consul in Macao, Hong Kong and Shanghai. Later he was stationed in Glasgow, Helsinki, Paris, Brussels and London, and abandoned a diplomatic career, it still took a few years trading and representation, for example, the shipping Soto and Aznar.

In 1911, Toda acquired Escornalbou Castle and the following year began the reconstruction of the pile of debris that formed the historic site of Sant Miquel de Escornalbou and created a large library. But he was widely criticized at the time, for having made the place, a mansion, not maintain historical accuracy.

The year 1926 gave the castle to the bishop of Tarragona for summer seminar, reserving the usufruct. Two years before his death, called for 100,000 pesetas to the bishop, for the works done after the transfer of Escornalbou, but the bishop, the same year he died All he sold the castle to Josep M. Llopis, Reus merchant. Before this, Eduard Toda, could recover the amount of furniture and the library, consisting of about 60,000 volumes. Eduard Toda was also the restorer of the monastery of Poblet, where he died nearly bankrupt in 1941.

Later in the seventies, the castle passed to the owners of Banco Urquijo, until a result of popular pressure, was acquired by a consortium of the Generalitat de Catalunya and the Provincial Government of Tarragona.

Foto: Lletres

At the foot of Escornalbou castle

Foto: SBA73

The castle-monastery seen from Santa Barbara

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