Church of Our Lady of the Assomption, San Clemente!

And this was a wonderful experience and we came back. On my road warrior rides in the Province of Cuenca, Autonomous Community of Castilla La Mancha, Kingdom of Spain i came upon San Clemente! There are other posts on the town in my blog, this one is on one of its monuments from 2017. I like to update/revise text and links; hope you enjoy as I.

And I bring you down to my beloved Spain again, this is going south of Madrid of Don Quijote dreams and stories. The land is arid and long but the views natural and men made are spectacular. The area of San Clemente is sublime; with lots of memories of family visits, always to be remembered.  I like to tell you a bit more on a nice monument there ,that again needs more showing in my opinion. The Church Monastery of Our Lady of the Assomption or Iglesia Monasterio de Nuestra Senora de la Asuncion in San Clemente!

San Clemente is a wonderful back door town ; the ones my grandparents told me and love to see them again all over Spain. Historically the region was known as the Mancha Alta, within the Mancha de Montearagón, a place name that would come from the fact that the Castilians who traveled to Valencia (which had already been conquered by Jaime I of Aragón in 1238) rode more so climbed  towards Aragón, when passing through this territory, located at a higher altitude. It is located at 110 km from Cuenca, and 80 km from Albacete, on the banks of the Rus River and at the convergence of the A-43 and AP-36 highways. You can get here on the A-3 (autovia de Valencia-Madrid) taking the regional road CM-3112 and crossing the villages of El Cañavate and Villar de Cantos until you reach the town. The national road N-310 crosses the urban nucleus, a link between the towns of Manzanares (Ciudad Real) and Villanueva de la Jara.(see post) All lovely country.

A bit of history I like on San Clemente

An important fact in the history of San Clemente lies in the war that the Catholic Monarchs maintained against the followers of Juana La Beltraneja, aspiring to the throne that Queen Isabel (I) la Católica held between the years 1476-1479, among whose followers was Don Diego Pacheco, Marquis de Villena  In this confrontation, the town of San Clemente decided to support Isabel the Catholic and reveals herself against the power of the Marquis of Villena. Once the war ended with victory for the Isabelite’s side, the support that San Clemente gave her helped the Catholic Monarchs to decide to incorporate the town of San Clemente into the crown, making it a kingdom and granting it independence from the town of Alarcón (see post) . It received the visit of the Catholic Monarchs on August 9, 1488, a visit in which, as a symbol of gratitude for the support given, they confirmed the privileges that had previously been granted to them, swearing to save and make order to keep all things and mercies and privileges that said town had .

During the War of Succession, it was the headquarters of General Duke of  Berwich, showing with remarkable armed help to show its loyalty to king Felipe V, who granted the town the title of Very Noble, Very Loyal and Faithful Villa. Already in the 19C, during the War of Independence (1808-1814), it was a town very worked by the French, since here Napoleon ordered the Frère division, with orders to reinforce the Moncey detachments that operated in Valencia and of Dupont, who was in Andalusia.  However, as several mails and offices intercepted by the French testify, the Frére division was unable to carry out its mission due to the magnitude of the routes and the difficulty of communications as well as the suffering inflicted by the inhabitants of San Clemente, among which the local hero Bibiano Hellín, whom  the writer Pérez Galdós cites in the National Episodes. During the Spanish Civil War, an airfield  was built in San Clemente. The 3rd squadron of Bombers group  12 of  Russians Tupolev SB-2 (katiuska) and some biplane fighters Polikarpov I-15, the flat ones were established there by the Republicans faction.

And now on the feature presentation! the Church Monastery of Our Lady of the Assomption.

The Monastery Church of Nuestra Senora de la Asuncion  was founded in 1523 as a convent belonging to the order of Santa Clara. The last Clarisse sisters left it at the beginning of the 21C. It is currently occupied by a small congregation of Carmelite sisters of the Sacred Family (Sagrada Familia). Its interior keeps the most beautiful cloister of all the convents of the town.


It has an irregular floor building consisting of church and convent around a high quality cloister, of which only two sides remain. The façade is composed of a large masonry factory where four ashlar buttresses are visible. The main doorway is a semicircular arch between pilasters that holds a niche. The most beautiful Cloister inside although only two lateral ones remain. Made in masonry, highlight the ashlars of its buttresses, as well as the cover, whose niche can be seen a carving of San Francisco de Asis.(St Francis of Assisi).


The Convent Monastery of Our Lady of the Assomption was born of the devotion of a mysterious local  widow, known by Melchora, who was followed in her ministry by two devout women, called the Toledanas (of Toledo). It has been told of this adventure, with the support of the Provincial of the Franciscans, who sent a religious from Villanueva de los Infantes,  Ana Sánchez, to form the trio of the pious in the Franciscan Observance. The decision was wrong. Well because of differences in interests or because of temperament between the Melchora and the religious of Villanueva, the first cohabitation ended with the expulsion of Ana from the house of Melchora, the first place of residence of the Beatas. A new settlement was sought, this time, without the temperamental Melchora, in the houses ceded by Martín Ruiz de Villamediana, a knight who arrived from Tierra de Campos. In spite of this lodging and some income , the relationsjips in the convent was very difficult. The disagreements continued later; perhaps that was the reason for the departure twenty years after of Ana Sánchez to Villanueva de los Infantes. The convent would only be consolidated by the retirement and inheritance provided by Mrs. Isabel de Pedrola, which allowed the construction of the convent church in the last quarter of the 16C. Always a nice story behind these old wonderful monuments.


Some webpages to help you plan your trip here and its worth the detour are:

The tourist office of San Clemente on its heritage:

The tourist board of the region of Castilla La Mancha on the church:

There you go ,another dandy in my Castilla La ManchaKingdom of Spain, or Spain everything under the Sun. A nice stop at San Clemente indeed , more written in my blog on nice experiences here. Enjoy the Church Monastery of Our Lady of the Assomption.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

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