Also known as the Monastery of Santa Maria de Belém, it is a masterpiece of 16th-century religious architecture in Portugal. Considered a technically advanced example for its combination of the functional programme - public service for mariners, monastery, palace and mausoleum - with the spatiality of a hall-church. It consists of spaces of different stylistic features that reflect the times of various interventions. The church, cloister, sacristy and refectory are examples of the manueline style (early 16th-century), the high altar and transept are mannerist (late 16th-century), the tower ending, old dorm and chapter room have revivalist characteristics (19th century) and modernism (20th century) is reflected in the east wing of the Navy Library extension.
Donated by D. Manuel I to the St. Jerome Order, the first construction campaign of the monastery started in 1514 , and engaged some of the most experienced masters of the time, such as Francisco de Arruda or Jerónimo de Ruão. The Cloister is a project by Diogo de Boitaca, and began its construction during the 2nd construction campaign (1517), under the direction of João de Castilho and was finished by Diogo de Torralva between 1540 and 1541. It is an exceptional exemple of manueline architecture, with a quadrangular layout on 2 floors of arcades and vaulted galleries with thematic decorations. In the lower plan we can find the tomb of the poet Fernando Pessoa, an art work by the sculptor Lagoa Henriques in 1985.
Classified as National Monument and inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, the Jeronimos Monastery is located in Belém, near the Tagus’ riverfront, in an urban context marked by other historical monuments and cultural buildings, part of Lisbon’s cultural scenery.