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Cardinal Street

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Cardinal Street


Basic Information

Location Monforte, Spain
Country Spain
City Monforte
Address Monforte, Spain

General Information

Open to visitors no
Need appointment no
Handicap accessibility no
Geographical Coordinates 42.5217,-7.5136


calle de los Sederos (silk dealers´ street), popularly known today as calle del Cardenal was occupied in the Middle Ages by businesses which made and traded cloths and silks.

Silk manufacture was introduced into Spain through the Moslems. Under the Catholic Monarchs at the end of the 15th century official silk weavers were ordered to be subject to exam to demonstrate their knowledge of the trade, thereby achieving a more refined manufacturing technique. As regards the silk shops set up in Galicia, the epicentre was located around the land of Valle de Lemos, Castro Caldelas, Quiroga and Valdedoras.

In Monforte, silk manufacture is established in around the 14th-15th centuries by the Benedictines and in the 16th century by the Franciscans or by the Lords themselves and then the Counts of Lemos.

Hence, in a letter sent by the Count of Lemos from Madrid to Pedro de Valcárcel, his book-keeper in Monforte, on January 4th 1618 he mentions am ambitious project intended to promote and drive on, in this land, silk tactile manufacture. His missive reads:

Pues del ha de resultar tan gran Beneficio a todos los della y que no se pierda tiempo sin que se empiece desde Luego y assi combiene que en recibiendo esta pongays en execución todo lo que os escribe Diego de Losada en la carta que aquí se os embia adereçándo y cultivando la tierra en la forma que en ella se os advierte.

The count informs him that he is particularly committed to the success of the venture and that, with this in mind, he is very interested that it should go ahead.

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