Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

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AndyLucyOne
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Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby AndyLucyOne » Fri Jan 18, 2019 6:42 am

Does anyone know why in the Pueblos Blancos, it seems that the churches and towers that stand proud above the villages are so often bare and aren't whitewashed ?

Were they originally whitewashed/decorated and this has worn off, or were they never so ?


Many thanks !

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby BENIDORM » Fri Jan 18, 2019 10:05 am

For what it's worth...My theory is ....

Most churches in Spain are constructed from stone or bricks, usually a combination of both , the materials used would have been better than many of the 'pueblo' non specific materials constructed houses .( mud -pebbles-straw etc ).
It's important to note that the village church was 'adored' by the population in days gone by , so only the best materials would have been used remembering that many of the village inhabitants were very poor.
Also many of the older 'churches' were originally mosques and were adapted for use by a different faith however in many churches you can see obvious signs of former use.
I have observed that the local church in my pueblo appears to have been constructed from several different eras materials , possibly even Roman ( robbed from the remains of ancient buldings).
I hope that my 'potted theory' is of help to you...
Regards,
Gordon

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costakid
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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby costakid » Fri Jan 18, 2019 10:35 am

A classic case Gordon is malaga cathedral which was constructed over a period of 250 years. Started off on the site of a mosque. I guess they used some of those materials.

There are a quite a few small churches which are whitewashed in villages east of Malaga that I have noticed.

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby BENIDORM » Fri Jan 18, 2019 11:45 am

CK...Yes, Malaga Cathedral is a fine example.

With regard to some pueblo churches being white-washed actually highlights my point about the fact that many people living in the villages were really poor and the churches would have been constructed from whatever materials available at the time.
Recently I watched a very old building in my village being demolished, just yards away from the church, and I took note of the materials, mainly small pebbles and rubble held together by mud and probably donkey number two's !
I would suggest that the whitewash actually holds and binds together the walls and despite the poor quality of the materials many of the houses have stood the test of time for several hundreds of years.
Also may I mention that the white-washing of the houses was traditionally carried out by the women, normally all of the neighbours would assist and the reason for this would be because the men folk would probably be working on the 'campo' for probably 16 hours each day.

Regards,
Gordon

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby olive » Fri Jan 18, 2019 3:18 pm

Still is in our village. Only women can hold and use a paint brush.

Man present? Then he drives regardless of the fact he has been drinking. Women dont drink, at least in public

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby AndyLucyOne » Fri Jan 18, 2019 5:27 pm

I notice that if you're unlucky enough to brush against a wall - inside or out - you come away with a "go-faster" stripe emblazoned on your shoulder and down your arm ! Is it a special kind of paint ? "Addidas White" ? It certainly doesnt have the grip of Dulux Vinyl Emulsion !

I remember staying in a Welsh cottage once where they used a lime mix to allow the walls to "breathe" to avoid damp building up behind the paint (gave the same branded stripes on clothing!). Is it something similar, especially if the walls are a kind of pebbly wattle-and-daub as you describe ? Could that be the purpose ?

... I have an image now of a hillside village full of women with one white arm, perfumed not with Chanel No.5 but Donkey No.2 !!

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby gerryh » Fri Jan 18, 2019 7:46 pm

Yes lime wash is the traditional paint.
Cheers
Gerry
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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby Gasman » Sat Jan 19, 2019 1:35 am

And what do the French call whitewash? Yup, Blanc d'Espagne ....

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby GerryinCajiz » Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:18 am

There was some talk a couple of years ago about getting Malaga cathedral finished. I think that died a death in the current economic climate.
Gerry

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby wollie » Sat Jan 19, 2019 12:46 pm

I do not know if people are aware of this, its a relatively simple process to make white lime suitable for painting.
All needs to be done is apply intense heat to lime rocks and it will turn to white lime powder.
The process was much like making charcoal but with more intense heat applied.
I assume this is the origin of "pueblos blancos" access to free/cheap paint.
I be thinking the people who built the castles be more interested to what be on the table to eat
than the color of the decor...

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby olive » Sat Jan 19, 2019 1:29 pm

GerryinCajiz wrote:There was some talk a couple of years ago about getting Malaga cathedral finished. I think that died a death in the current economic climate.


They could ask Trump for the money!

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby Pamela1 » Sat Jan 19, 2019 7:41 pm

I have used a satnav on many trips into different towns and villages, it always directs me to the centre before announcing that i have reached my point of destination. Usually it puls me up right outside of a church... Are most churches built in the centre of the towns and villages?

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gerryh
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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby gerryh » Sat Jan 19, 2019 7:51 pm

Probably as it was normal for life to be centred around the church.
Cheers
Gerry
Last edited by gerryh on Tue Jan 22, 2019 7:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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costakid
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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby costakid » Sat Jan 19, 2019 8:59 pm

GerryinCajiz wrote:There was some talk a couple of years ago about getting Malaga cathedral finished. I think that died a death in the current economic climate.


There was going to be a vote in Malaga to see if the money should be spent on finishing the cathedral or other projects.

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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby AndyLucyOne » Tue Jan 22, 2019 1:18 am

I found this on the Interweb. It mentions the houses, but not the churches.


Reasons for Whitewashing Houses in Andalusia
6 May 2010, 07:12
BennyMalaga
Malaga, Spain


The white towns in Andalusia whitewash their houses twice a year, as per custom. There are two reasons for doing this, and a recent guide I had explained this.

1. To protect the houses from the sun during summer. White houses are cooler during the hot summer than houses with other colors. This bit of wisdom comes from the Moors. The white color reflects the sunlight and does not absorb it, keeping the house cool.

2. To disinfect the houses. The whitewash contains lime that is mixed with water, chloride, and white cement. The lime is a powerful disinfectant and repels insects. It also adds a layer to the outside of the house and makes it stronger, since the previous layers are not removed, but a new layer is added. The whitewash also waterproofs the house.

In many white towns like Casares, the town authorities keep track of which homeowners whitewash their houses, and when. A homeowner who does not whitewash his house in the period necessary may get a fine from the authorities. This assures that every single house is whitewashed. That is why one will find that all the houses are whitewashed.


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gerryh
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Re: Pueblos Blancos Churches and Towers

Postby gerryh » Tue Jan 22, 2019 7:40 pm

Also another possible reason is lime wash is cheap and fairly easy to make from naturally occurring lime stone.
Cheers
Gerry
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