The building

The Archaeological Museum of Asturias since 1952 is housed in the old cloister of the convent of San Vicente in the city of Oviedo. This building, whose rich history it relates to the origin of the city, was declared a national monument in 1934.

A document copied in the twelfth century, attributes the origin of the monastery of San Vicente to year 761 when, reigning Fruela I, Fromestano Abbot, and his nephew Maximo moved into a desert place called Oviedo.

From this primitive construction has come a little rest, and the Romanesque building from the late eleventh century or first half of the twelfth century, of which we know only some remains found in various works of restoration.

The present cloister was begun in the 1530s, under the direction of master Juan de Badajoz  “the Younger”.

Juan de Cerecedo “ the Elder” and his death, his nephew Juan de Cerecedo “the Younger”, concluded the upper floor in the 1570s.

The Cloister
Historical Building

The first arose and began also the ancient monastic church, now the parish church of Santa María la Real de la Court, completed by Juan Ribero Rada in 1592.

The lower cloister vaults consists of twenty four meters of light, gothic, with ribbed single star, and simple keys. The ribs of the vaults rest on the wall on shelves enjarjes joined by a frieze of air renaissance same style as seen in the pillars and arches that open into the garden of the cloister.

In the 1670 regularized the main facade of the monastery, with splendid baroque front today. The harsh climate of Asturias led the monks to decide to close the upper gallery of the cloister, which gave access to the cells. Thus, this gallery was closed with a wall and windows and the ground floor with large windows under the direction of Juan Agustin Cean Bermudez, in 1775. Also during the eighteenth century built a service courtyard, now Place of Father Feijoo. Manuel Reguera this work culminated in 1794. It installed the stables, a barn, a slaughterhouse, the file, several rooms of fun and new cells.

As impressive building reflects, ultimately, the economic power of the monastery, one of the richest of Asturias to be favored by the constant donation of goods and property. Lived here over half a century Jerome Feijoo (Orense, 1676-1764), one of the earliest and most illustrious Spanish Enlightenment, abbot of the monastery for thirty years. A few years lived with him Fray Martin Sarmiento, who was professed devotion and promoter of culture and archeology in Galicia.

After the confiscation of church property in 1837 the building became property of the Diputación de Oviedo, becoming administrative units. In 1934 the old cloister of San Vicente was declared a historic-artistic monument. From 1939 began the restoration of the same under the direction of Luis Menéndez Pidal, architect, curator of monuments in the northwest, and Manuel Bobes (father and son).

The convent church adjoining the cloister was segregated as a parish of St. Mary of the Court and, in turn, in 1969 the service bays of the courtyard, the plaza de Feijoo, housed the Faculty of Philosophy and Letters, today Psychology.

From 1952 to 2003 houses the Archaeological Museum of Asturias. This year was closed to undertake the renovation and extension of it that were undertaken by the Ministry of Culture project and addresses of architects Fernando Pardo Calvo and Bernardo Garcia Tapia