We arrived in Soure in the morning of 31th August 2014 to participate in an activity integrated in the program “Ciência Viva no Verão” (Summer Living Science). This activity, organized by the “Rede de Castelos e Muralhas do Mondego” (Castles and Town Walls of the Mondego Network), led us in the discovery of the Castle of Soure.

Keep tower

Keep tower

The Castle of Soure is a Portuguese castle located in Soure, in Coimbra district, Portugal. It has been listed as a National monument since 1949.

The castle has the particularity of being erected in a flat area instead of being in an elevated spot. This is explained, in part, by its proximity to the converging point of the Arunca and Anços rivers.

Together with other castles, such as the castles of Penela and Montemor-o-Velho, the Castle of Soure was part of the Defensive Line of the Mondego, which was an advanced line of protection to Coimbra.

Despite the absence of written testimonies, everything indicates that D. Sesnando Davides was the responsible one for the construction of the castle, originally a simple structure, without any tower.

Castle of Soure was donated to the Templar’s Order by D. Teresa. D. Gualdim Pais, master of the Templars since 1156, was responsible for one of the most important stages of construction of the the Castle of Soure. The castle was provided with two towers in the south wall, as well as with the keep tower with “alambor”, which consists of the reinforcement of the footing of the foundation wall.

In 1319, the Castle of Soure, as well as the other assets of the former Templar’s Order, was inherited by the Christ Order. The castle was in their possession until 1834.

Ruins of Church of Our Lady of Finisterra

Ruins of Church of Our Lady of Finisterra

In the 19th century, two towers were sold to João Lobo Santiago Gouveia, Count of Verride. Since one of the towers was in a state of serious disrepair, in 1880, the municipality of Soure was forced to knock it down.

It was only in 2004 that the castle became property of the municipality of Soure.

Nowadays, the Castle of Soure is in a very bad state of conservation. There are only two surviving towers, the keep tower, partially ruined, and the tower in the opposite corner.

It is a simple and small castle whose dominating architectural styles are the Medieval, Romanic, along with Gothic and Manueline influences.

On the East side of the castle, one finds the ruins of the “Igreja da Nossa Senhora da Finisterra” (Church of Our Lady of Finisterra).



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