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Melide iglesia: model for the 10 euro note?

Camino(s) past & future
Camino Del Estrecho, Ruta Fray Leopoldo,
Vía Serrana, Camino Francés
The other day when we were in Melide, we took a close look at Iglesia San Pedro because the author of the Moon Camino de Santiago guidebook says its Romanesque church doorway served as a model for the illustration on the 10 euro note. (Edited to add: be sure to read @kathar1na’s note below clarifying this with a link to an article by two Galicians from Melide saying this is not the case!) When you are walking through Melide, you may be more likely to be paying attention to the pulperías on your left with their steaming vats prominently displayed, but just after you pass by Pulpería Garnacha and Pulpería Ezeqquiel, look across the street and you will see Iglesia de San Pedro (on the right side of the N-547 as you are heading west). On some maps, it is called Capilla San Roque because the Romanesque doorway you see was actually salvaged from Iglesia San Roque. When you reach the Familia autoservicios supermercado, you are opposite the church.

The drawing appears on the second generation of the 10 euro note first printed in 2013. As of August 2019, there were more than two billion 10 euro banknotes in circulation, so this view that we eyed through the wind and the rain seems like it should be better known. But although the artist chosen to design the notes originally submitted drawings of particular doorways and bridges from various periods of European architecture (a different era for each denomination), the drawings were later modified to be generic, so maybe that explains the lack of information regarding the connection.

There are some details in this article. Does anyone know more about it?

E5187C9D-C3E3-43E4-B998-36289C260B48.jpeg

To see the church door, once past the pulperías, look for the red Familia autoservicios sign, and then look across the street.
B909BB40-1ECA-4BAE-B9CC-D523656B410C.jpeg
Blue arrow and circle = Iglesia de San Pablo / San Roque
2F9DC55F-55D1-4550-AAE8-DB5261C83EF6.jpeg
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
guidebook says its Romanesque church doorway served as a model for the illustration on the 10 euro note.
It is an urban legend, I am afraid. This article on a website called Galicia Encantada - Enciclopedia de Fantasia Popular de Galicia sheds some light on it and is quite good, I think. It is written by someone from Melide but in Galician and not so easy to understand, even with the help of Google Translate or DeepL (who do only translations from Spanish and Portuguese anyway).

As a personal remark, I would be surprised if this portal and the church is very present in books about Romanesque architecture as the portal doesn't even belong to the church, as you already mentioned. It was moved there when the original church fell to ruin. The old church was dismantled in 1949. I very much enjoyed looking at it, though, and at the cruceiro next to it.

PS: The various guidebooks, including the esteemed Gitlitz/Davidson from whom they all probably copied, seem to be a bit unclear about what's what. According to Santiago Turismo, the present-day chapel of San Roque was built in 1949, with material from the demolished medieval churches of San Pedro and San Roque.
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Camino Del Estrecho, Ruta Fray Leopoldo,
Vía Serrana, Camino Francés
It is an urban legend, I am afraid. This article on a website called Galicia Encantada - Enciclopedia de Fantasia Popular de Galicia sheds some light on it and is quite good, I think.
Aha - a very interesting article. Thank you, @Kathar1na! I wondered why I couldn’t find more verification for it. I searched in English and Spanish, but didn’t think to search in Galician! I’ll pass this on to Moon Handbooks so they can correct this error in future editions.

The BBC article says the artist did use actual models for his original submissions. Did you run across anything that tells what he used for the 10 euro note - ie, before the design was modified to be generic?
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
The BBC article says the artist did use actual models for his original submissions. Did you run across anything that tells what he used for the 10 euro note - ie, before the design was modified to be generic?
I had never heard this before. Right from the beginning we were told that the portals, windows and bridges were generic in order to avoid any fuss about national pride, national hurt etc. As the designer Robert Kalina is Austrian, I googled for articles in German, there are plenty of interviews with him but nothing about any specific models.

The German Wikipedia article is mum about this. The French and the English one claim, much like the BBC link, that a bridge in Paris and a bridge in Venice served as models but when you look at the source that they give - a 2001 article in the New York Times - what you read is actually this: For his central motif, Mr. Kalina chose a bridge — not Pont Neuf in Paris or Venice's Bridge of Sighs. Mr. Kalina's was a bridge that no European had ever crossed. The ground rules for the design strictly prohibited displaying any recognizable national monuments or heroes that risked giving greater prominence to one country over another. So Mr. Kalina took bits and pieces of Europe's great bridges and with the help of his computer melded them into a neutered bridge presumably acceptable to all.

I think if any of the motifs on the €-banknotes were based on an actual building, this would be commonly known in Europe. It isn't the case.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
Oh, I found something about the €-bridges. The editor of "Bridge Design and Engineering" claimed that he had identified five of the seven bridges when the winner of the design competition, Robert Kalina, was known and the design of the future banknotes was published, see here for example. This is how the fuss started, says the German National Bank in one of their many glossy brochures about the creation, introduction and history of the Euro. That was in 1997 when most people didn't even know that the Euro would really come one day :). This was four years before the €-banknotes came into general circulation and before a single banknote had been printed. The design was quickly further modified.

Nothing about the windows and portals, though.

I'd like to add, without naming names, that the media in a country that didn't introduce the Euro took an extraordinary interest in the Euro (and its predicted imminent failure). 🙃
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
As the article in Galicia Encantada says, there is little similarity between the design on the 10 € banknote and the portal of the church in Melide:

Not the same.jpg
 

jungleboy

Nick
Camino(s) past & future
Francés 2017
Primitivo 2018
Madrid 2019
Kumano Kodo 2019
Right from the beginning we were told that the portals, windows and bridges were generic in order to avoid any fuss about national pride, national hurt etc.
Yes, we were. But the image on the €5 note is pretty clearly the Pont du Gard.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Del Estrecho, Ruta Fray Leopoldo,
Vía Serrana, Camino Francés
The articles about Robert Kalina are quite interesting too. Clearly my quaint mental image of an artist wandering around Europe with his paint box is not correct. He is (was?) a banknote designer from the Oesterreichische Nationalbank and virtually every photo shows him in front of a computer.
 

Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
the image on the €5 note is pretty clearly the Pont du Gard.
That's what they like to think 😇. But look closely, in particular at the arches in the middle row and where their pillars or piers (I don't really know bridge terminology) are placed and you see a major difference, also in other more minor details. But this is the prettiest and most easily recognisable Roman aqueduct that is still standing I guess. Many Europeans will be able to recognise it as a Roman aqueduct/bridge on their 5 € bills but they will not know where a real life aqueduct resembling it may be located and may never have heard or, or long forgotten that they ever heard of, the Pont du Gard.

Roman aquaduct.jpg
 
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Kathar1na

Member
Camino(s) past & future
To Santiago and beyond (from home; Voie de Tours; Camino Francés; Biskaya; Manche; Via Brabantica)
And are you all checking the national side of the 2-€ coins that end up in your wallet before you spend them again? For all fans of European bridges, the coin shown below is legal tender in the euro zone. They minted 3.400.000 coins in 2016, so there's a possibility that one of them passes through your hands:

Segovia 2016.jpg
 

VNwalking

Wandering in big circles
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
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And there are plenty of potential other models, here are just four:
This is worth a whole thread. Not to discuss them as models for money, just as beautifully proportioned side-by-side photos. It's an arresting set of images. Thank you, @Kathar1na !
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
I located this page at the website of the European Central Bank, as they are responsible for the design and printing of all Euro notes:


This site explains exactly how each Euro note is designed, as well as all the anti-fraud features included in the designs. At the top of this page, the first topic is "Architectural Images."

In the penultimate sentence is the concise statement: "...Like the first series, the new Europa series banknotes show architectural styles from various periods in Europe's history, but do not show any actual existing monuments or bridges..."

I think this settles the discussion. Every image is intended to be representative and indicative of an architectural style, not a specific building, monument or other structure.

FYI, It is something I also wondered about for decades.

Hope this helps the discussion.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Del Estrecho, Ruta Fray Leopoldo,
Vía Serrana, Camino Francés
This is worth a whole thread. Not to discuss them as models for money, just as beautifully proportioned side-by-side photos. It's an arresting set of images. Thank you, @Kathar1na !
What an interesting project that would be for somebody walking a camino - pick an era and take photos of some particular architectural element all along the way and then make a photo gallery that compares them side by side. I wish I had done that this time with Romanesque doorways.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Us:Camino Frances, 2015 Me:Catalan/Aragonese, 2019
What an interesting project that would be for somebody walking a camino - pick an era and take photos of some particular architectural element all along the way and then make a photo gallery that compares them side by side. I wish I had done that this time with Romanesque doorways.
This could also be done as a forum crowd source project.
 
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