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Ramon Llull’s Cave

cova_ramon_llull

The Santuari Mare de Déu de Cura is a monastery located on top of the Randa mountain in the municipality of Algaida. It is considered an eminently Llullian site (Ramon Llull, ca. 1232-1316). Access to the sanctuary grounds is through a large portal. In the middle of its pediment is the coat-of-arms of the Franciscan order and above it, the Llullian crest of a half-moon. Below the coat-of-arms is an inscription reproducing a verse from Ramon Llull’s work Blanquerna: “Amable fill, saluda Nostra Dona, qui és salut e benedicció nostra” (Amiable son, greet Our Lady, who is our health and blessing).

Legend has it that in a humble cave located a few hundred metres to the west of the sanctuary, Ramon Llull spent a short time of retreat and experienced an enlightenment, which caused him to later write the work Ars Magna.

Having visited the site myself, I very much doubt that the cave shown in my photo and inscribed as the Cova de Ramon Llull can possibly be the authentic one. The cave is of a very small size and of a very low height. There does not seem to be enough space for a hermit to live for any length of time, however short and however frugal. I may be wrong, though. Circumstances were probably quite different 777 years ago, especially for hermits.

The photo was taken near Randa, Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: February 12th, 2009. The time was 13:20:57.

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