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The head of the size of San Roque destroyed during the Civil War is found in Blanca (05/02/2018)

A neighbor picked up the fragment of the image, thus preventing it from being burned in its entirety, and the intention now is to exhibit it in the church of San Juan Evangelista next to the carving that was subsequently made

The Center of Restoration of the Region of Murcia will study the head of the stature of San Roque found in Blanca and that is believed to belong to the old image of the patron saint of the locality, disappeared during the Civil War.

The General Director of Cultural Heritage, Juan Antonio Lorca, accompanied the mayor of Blanca, Esther Hortelano, and the town's chronicler, Ángel Ríos, who deposited the size fragment, as well as a head of the angel that is believed to also belong to the same sculptural group, so that it is dated and its authorship is studied.

The discovery came after a visit from the chronicler to a residence for the elderly, where he gave a talk and showed several old photographs among which was one of the old throne of San Roque.

It was then when a woman revealed that the size of the pattern had not been totally destroyed, since she herself, during the Civil War, picked up the heads of the square where they were burning, giving them to a neighbor to keep them.

Lorca highlighted "the finding of the pieces" and congratulated the chronicler "for the work done."

He was also confident that "from the Restoration Center, and after the historical and scientific studies that are going to be carried out, it can be confirmed that we are ahead of the size of the old boss, which will undoubtedly be a great news for the people of Blanca and for the entire Region, which recovers in this way a small fragment of its history ".

It is believed that the original size of San Roque was made in the first half of the eighteenth century, as it is preserved a 1922 document in which the then parish priest refers to the image and dates around 1734. Also, There are also references to the completion of the construction of the hermitage of San Roque, at the end of that decade, and it is believed that it was in 1739 that the first pilgrimage of the saint could be made.

The general director of Cultural Goods said that "the centers and means of the Ministry are always available to municipalities, with whose leaders we work in a coordinated manner in the recovery, conservation, dissemination and enhancement of all our heritage, identity of our Region and, in many occasions, an important claim for quality cultural tourism ".

In the case of the head of San Roque, from the Restoration Center a historical and stylistic study of the piece will be carried out, trying to gather all kinds of existing documentation.

In parallel, there will also be a scientific study, making a radiographic plate to study the inside of the head and a stratigraphy to see the chemical composition of the pigments.

It will be then when the action will be decided that will be followed with these pieces that, for the moment, they want to exhibit in an urn in the church of San Juan Evangelista de Blanca, next to the current size of San Roque, made in 1941 by the sculptor Federico Coullaut-Valera Mendigutia, from the photographs that were kept of the old saint.

Regarding the work carried out by the Restoration Center, Juan Antonio Lorca also recalled "his intense work for the Holy Week, since there are several sizes that go through this space every year to regain their original splendor".

At present, the size of San Juan Evangelista by José Capuz, from the Marraja de Cartagena Brotherhood, remains in its facilities;

the Angel of Passion of Sánchez Lozano, belonging to the Cofradía California;

and San Miguel Arcángel by Nicolás Salzillo, from the parish of San Miguel Murcia.

Work is also under way on the restoration of the stature of the patron saint of Lorca, Nuestra Señora de las Huertas, and the recently deposited Neapolitan nativity scene whose birth is attributed to Francisco Salzillo.

Source: CARM

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