CULTURAL LANDSCAPE | Church of Our Lady of the Assumption

The church of Our Lady of the Assumption, built at the beginning of the 15th century, is the biggest building of the urban center of Zerain.
Inside it holds a Romanesque copper cross decorated with precious stones. It dates back to the 12th century, and there’s only another one in Gipuzkoa, in the church of Zegama.

We can also see a baptismal font carved from stone in the 17th century. It has curious images on the sides: the shield of Zerain, a sun, a lion, a cluster of grapes, a moon, etc. Other elements of the church of Our Lady of the Assumption are three holly water fonts or stoups, a choir, a pulpit, one main altar and two smaller side altars, tombs, an arch supporting the choir, vaults, etc.

Origins and reformation

 The oldest document is a Baptismal Book from 1556, but the words carved in the tomb of Joan Garcia de Cerain with gothic letters say: “This tomb was built by Joan Garcia de Cerain, year 1457”.

The building we can see nowadays is a restoration made in the 18th century. In that time, the church is in a very bad state, and after a request of Doña Maria de Cerain y Zarauz the archbishop of Panplona approved to start the restoration works. The restoration was made after the plans made by the architect Juan de Carrera, even if there were lots of changes, because the people of Zerain followed the works very closely. During this works, the wood was replaced bi stone from the Oa quarry of Zerain. Once the outside works were finished started the inside decoration, and after several discussions, Diego Martinez de Arze conducted the construction of the three baroque style retables we can see nowadays.


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