C A N T A B R I A   U N I V E R S I T Y
Military Architecture
The Pre-Romanesque.  
    Church of Arroyuelos   Due to the merely superficial Romanization in certain small areas and the Visigoth conquest, reaching only a small part of the land, Cantabria remained, until the 8th century, isolated from the main Hispanic cultural areas. From this moment on, the re-settlement drive with people from the Duero Valley and Mozarabics in the 9th century meant Cantabria's reincorporation to art history. These immigrations firmly established Hispanic-Visigothic standards of living and introduced Christian culture, with the subsequent foundation of monasteries during the 8th and 9th centuries, such as San Martín de Turieno (later, Santo Toribio de Liébana), Santa María de Piasa and Santa Juliana in Santillana del Mar, all of them later renovated.

The 9th and 10th century constructions represent Pre-Romanesque art in Cantabria. The Rupestrian churches in the area of Valderredible are the first examples of this period of art in the second half of the 9th century. They are simple chambers dug out of the rock which are characterized by their plain building technique and the incorporation of Hispano-Moorish art features as in the churches of Arroyuelos and Santa María de Valverde.

Several buildings are constructed with good dressed stones in the 10th century, presenting a suitable arrangement of the space, longitudinal plans, a hierarchy of volumes projecting outwards and the use of horseshoe Moorish arch and scrolled modillions on the eaves, as can be appreciated in the churches of San Román del Moroso and Helguera. These features appear again in Santa María de Lebeña, except for the plan, which is well compartmented due to the influence of Asturian art. The bothanical and geometric décor is introduced to architecture on capitals and modillions, as well as on mobile art objects such as the clasp of Santa María de Hito.

Church of San Román de Moroso (Bostronizo)
Church of Santa María de Lebeña
Clasp of Santa María de Hito
A R T I S T I C   H E R I T A G E