Igreja de Jesus

Visitor's Guide

Igreja de Jesus, Lisbon

The façade reflects the architectural styles of the late 18th century

Known both as Igreja de Jesus and Igreja das Mercês, this church is mostly a reconstruction of another that was destroyed in the earthquake of 1755.

Igreja de Jesus, Lisbon

A vaulted ceiling in the church is a masterpiece of tile art

Its interior is not dripping with gold like Igreja de Santa Catarina and Igreja de São Roque nearby, but it hides a masterpiece of tile art in Portugal. It’s a little-known vaulted ceiling, hidden in a hall that’s not always open to the public. It dates from 1714, and the baroque-style illustrations by António de Oliveira Bernardes (one of the masters of tile art) evoke the Litanies of the Virgin Mary.

Igreja de Jesus, Lisbon

The tiled hall of the church

The rest of the church's interior mixes the baroque, rococo and mannerist styles. The ceiling has stucco decorations, while the side chapels are made up of gilded wood and 17th-century and 18th-century paintings depicting several saints.

Igreja das Mercês, Lisbon

The interior of the church

This was where the Marquis of Pombal, who was responsible for the reconstruction of downtown Lisbon after the 1755 earthquake, was baptized and where he was buried until his tomb was transferred to a church in the neighborhood of Ajuda.

Igreja de Jesus, Lisbon

One of the church's baroque chapels

The church was part of a convent from 1633, part of which is now a geological museum. Across the building is one of Lisbon’s most picturesque streets, Rua do Vale, which perfectly frames the church’s façade.

Igreja de Jesus, Lisbon

The church's painted ceiling

How to Get to Igreja de Jesus

Tram 28 stops nearby (the stop is marked “Calçada do Combro”). You may ride the tram (as well as the city’s metro, buses, funiculars and trains) for free with the Lisboa Card.

Largo de Jesus, São Bento

Admission and Tickets to Igreja de Jesus

Admission is free.

It only opens on Sundays (for Mass at noon and 6:30pm).

Attractions Nearby

The Júlio Pomar Museu, which houses many of the works of one of Portugal’s greatest 20th-century artists is down the street from the church, while behind it is the fascinating but little known Geological Museum. Around the corner is one of Lisbon’s most beautiful churches, Igreja de Santa Catarina.

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