2021 marks the 800th Anniversary of the magnificent Cathedral of Burgos in Spain. One of the most remarkable aspects of the Burgos Cathedral is how it reflects a rich succession of artistic styles, spanning classic Gothic to Baroque. Burgos Cathedral began construction during the reign of King Ferdinand III of Castile and under the direction of English born and Paris educated Don Mauricio, Bishop of Burgos.
Located on the Plaza de Santa Maria the style of the Cathedral is primarily Gothic, but you can see elements of Renaissance and Baroque styles as well. The highly recognizable main façade is three stories high and offers two square bell towers. While the façade reflects the French Gothic style, the spires atop the bell towers, added on in the 15th century, are purely Germanic features.
Alternate entrances were also complete in differing styles. Portal de la Pellejeria was completed in the 16th Century in a Renaissance style, while the earlier portals of Sarmental and la Coroneria are both done in 13th Century Gothic. As with all Spanish cathedrals the time taken in construction lent itself to a progression of featured design styles to enter into the equation.
Construction began in 1221, making 2021 the 800th anniversary, however, the Cathedral construction experienced many delays, one lasting almost two centuries. Finished in 1567, the Cathedral was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1984.
Any time you are in that area of the world, you can stop in for a visit to see the Cathedral and its numerous artworks, as it is open to tourists most days and still holds several mass services each week. There is no charge to visit and people of all faiths are welcome.
Known for more than its architecture, Burgos Cathedral is also famed for its collections of sculptures and paintings. Within the extensive collection of religious paintings, there is a series of works from Flanders obtained as a result of trade between Burgos and that region. They represent one of the most important European collections of Flemish works.
The stained-glass windows that have filtered colorful light into the temple since the late 13th century, however, are the main treat on this coin. The reverse of the coin offers a detail of the stained-glass window called “EL ROSETON DEL SARMENTAL” (The rose window of the vine shoot). This beautiful stained glass window opens above the Sarmental door and illuminates the nave of the south transept. It is a grandiose circle nearly 20 feet in diameter. The detail depicted in the coin is in the center of the stained glass window and it is called “LA DIVINA LITURGIA” (The Holy Liturgy).
This lovely 2021 issue of Spain is struck in .925 fine silver proof. It’s 40 millimeters in diameter, 27 grams in weight, denominated at 10 Euro and will be held at a mintage of 6,000 pieces.
While the Burgos Cathedral has appeared on other Spanish coins, such as the bi-metallic 2012 circulating 2 Euro commemorative, this 2021 silver 10 Euro is the first to offer a glimpse of the cathedrals magnificent stained glass windows. A 50 Euro silver commemorative for Burgos Cathedral was struck in 2007 and is currently on the market for right around $400. This new 2021 piece can be found for just under $100, but most dealers offering the piece are in Europe, so shipping will be a significant factor for collectors in the United States.