Art: Treasure in Iron

Spain's ironworkers are artisans beyond compare, and Spanish architects have known full well how to use their best craftsmen. When Philip II commanded Architect Juan Herrera to build the Cathedral of Valladolid in 1585, Herrera designed it to include a lofty screen, or reja, 45 ft. high and 47 ft. wide, that would span the width of the cathedral between the choir and the altar. Work on the wrought-iron grille .was begun about 1668; the gilding was not completed until 1764. In 1920, when the church rearranged the choir, the huge grille was removed.

What saved the reja from the scrap heap...

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