Monastery of Saint Benedict of Vitoria

The Monastery of São Bento da Vitória is located in the center of Porto, in the parish of Vitória, and was built at the end of the 16th century. Construction ended around a century after it began. It was a long process, which is reflected in the Mannerist and Baroque architecture and ornamentation of the church, with works from different periods and of great significance in the context of Portuguese art history.

After 1834, the building was used as a court and prison, and also as barracks, successively housing the troops of the Junta do Porto (1846-1847), Infantry Regiment No. 6, the National Artillery Battalion, Hunter Battalion No. 9, Hunter Battalion No. 1 and other military services. It wasn’t until 1977 that the building ceased to be used by the army.

In 1922, the building was hit by a fire which destroyed the area occupied by the Military Prison, the Military Court and the barracks of two regiments (Infantry 31 and Engineering), leading to the gradual withdrawal of the military corps.

The building was then vacant and in a considerable state of disrepair. Between 1985 and 1990, IPPAR subjected the Monastery to restoration work, allowing the Benedictine monks, the Porto National Orchestra and the Porto District Archive to move in.

In 2007, the State assigned a significant part of the building to the TNSJ (Teatro Nacional de S. João), where it hosts theatrical performances, concerts and special events from its program, as well as outside initiatives of various kinds.

It has been classified as a National Monument since 1977.

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