PORTO: Legends of Porto III
Another amazing post about the legends and secrets of Porto. Ready to find them?
1. Clérigos Tower
Being one of the biggest landmarks of Porto, the Clérigos Tower - Torre dos Cléricos - is not without its myths.
This tower was built in the second half of the 18th century (1763) and it was the highest building in the country when it was built.
The tower was designed by Nicola Nasoni, and he considered it his masterpiece.
Nasoni built several buildings in Porto and has participated in some important architectural interventions, such as the Cathedral of Porto and the Carmo’s Church.
So, what is the myth of this tower?
Well, supposedly Nasoni was not paid for the design of the tower, and legend says that as payment, he asked that his body, and his family’s, would remain in the tower past their deaths.
Nasoni died in the building, for it was being used as a hospital at that time, and still to the date his grave was still not found.
It was in 2014, during an intervention to repair parts of the building, that an unknown crypt was found.
That crypt harbored close to 20 bodies and quickly came to the mind of everyone that they could have found the sepulture of Nasoni (which it’s place has been unknown)!
2. The Stairs of Truth
In Porto, right behind the Bishop’s palace, located next to the cathedral, there’s a flight of stairs called the “Stairs of Truth”. They lead to a medieval arch called also “The Arch of Truth”.
But this is currently! Originally the stairs and the arch were called the “Stairs of Lies” and the “Arch of Lies”.
The arch was actually the place where Portus had one of its 4 entrances to the village on the medieval wall built to protect it. That door was also called the Doors of the Lies.
It is said that the arch was, in reality, an aqueduct and that every now and then some droplets of water would fall, and so the population said that passing through that arch, would clean their sins. So that was the perfect place for gossip! People would gather close to the arch, they would gossip about everyone and then they would proceed to pass the arch to “wash their sins”.
Since not all gossips are true, and so the idea of naming it the Stairs, Arch, and Door of the Lies came to be!
Now, why would they change the name for the Truth centuries later?
Well as we said before, this area is right behind the Bishop’s palace, and close to the cathedral. This area dates back to the 5th century whilst the palace was built in the 18th century and the Cathedral in the 12th.
It is said that they changed the names from Lies to Truth around the 15th century because it was not ok to have an area of Porto with names referring to lies so close to the Righteous Cathedral, and thus changing the names to “Truth”!
3. Teatro Hotel
In the downtown of Porto, right next to the main Avenue - Aliados Avenue - there is a hotel called “Teatro” which means “Theater” in Portuguese.
This hotel was in fact originally a theater when it was built.
Nowadays some of its employees reported that sometimes they would hear weird noises when no one was around in the corridors.
They also claimed that sometimes some of the doors of the rooms would open by themselves, they hear the sounds of knocking on the doors, and so on.
It is said that it is in fact haunted. But haunted by what or by who?
Well. it turns out that the Theater - The Baquet Theather - was destroyed due to a fire that killed close to 100 people. Being speculated that the sounds heard throughout the Hotel are those poor souls trying to get out.
We’ve been inside the Hotel and the reception is very dark and has dim lights all over. Is this done on purpose to perpetuate the myth or is it just some strange coincidence in the choice of decoration?
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