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Hermitages and churches

The stones here speak, because they are a part
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La Xara

Església de Sant Mateu

The parish of Sant Mateu in La Xara is a relatively recent creation. It was separated in 1954 from the mother parish of Nostra Senyora de L'Assumpció (Our Lady of the Assumption) in Dénia, which had served it until then. The church itself is of course much older and stands as the first public construction in La Xara. Construction began in 1877 and was completed in 1881. According to oral historical accounts, the interest and also probably the financial support of the Ivars family, the first settlers of La Xara, were instrumental in enabling the construction of the church in question.

The church has a rectangular floor plan with three naves, the central nave being wider than the two side ones. The arches are made of rough stones placed on pillars of the same material. The roof is supported by a ribbed vault that holds a double-pitched ceramic tile covering.

The façade is very simple, with a prominent limestone base and a recessed doorway made of stone blocks. It is topped with a mixed pediment and pyramid-shaped finials made of carved stone.

The square-shaped bell tower is located on the left side, with a stone base and cornerstones. The elevation is divided into three sections separated by stone mouldings. The first section contains the clock, the second houses the bells with semi-circular openings made of limestone, and the third section features a reinforced concrete structure with flying buttresses.

Adjacent to the church is the abbey, a single-story building with a dual-pitched roof. Its façade is composed of four arched openings made of limestone blocks and also includes a closed garden or courtyard. On the other lateral façade, the buttresses that support the interior side chapels can be seen. (1)  

(1) Sanchis i Sivera, J. (1922) Nomenclátor Geográfico-Eclesiástico de los pueblos de la Diócesis de Valencia. València.

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