It is located near the town of Cuacos de Yuste, in the region of La Vera in the northeast of the province of Cáceres, in a beautiful and quiet place in the foothills of the Sierra de Tormantos. The origin of the Monastery of Yuste must be sought in the year 1402 when a monastery of "hermits of the poor life" was established in the place. With time, this community of hermits increased and they accepted the rule of San Jerónimo. This Jeronimo monastery was founded under the patronage of the Infante Don Fernando, brother of Henry III, but the works were not completed until 1554 thanks to the support of the Counts of Oropesa and the Bishop of Plasencia. The Monastery of Yuste acquired its greatest relevance when Carlos V, the Emperor, decided, after abdicating his son Felipe II, to retire to it, so it was necessary to face the construction of a palace that would house the royal quarters. These works were carried out between 1554 and 1557. The Emperor had to wait in Jarandilla, in the palace of the Counts of Oropesa, for some time until the work was completed and he was able to move to Yuste where he would die a year later, in September 1558.
During the War of Independence the convent was set on fire and was practically destroyed. The Hieronymites were expelled from Yuste and with the confiscation of Mendizábal, it was sold and began to deteriorate and be abandoned until in 1857 the Marquis of Mirabel bought it, who repaired it and reopened the church for cult. Declared a Historic-Artistic Monument in 1931, after the Civil War it was ceded to the State, which began its reconstruction in 1949. The Monastery of San Jerónimo de Yuste was integrated in the National Patrimony in 2004. The Monastery of Yuste is currently inhabited by the monks of the Order of San Pablo Primer Eremita, being the first monastery of this Pauline Order in Spain.
At the entrance to the palace and the church, some impressive eucalyptus trees, with trunks of immense diameter, welcome the visitor who is about to tour the Monastery of Yuste complex formed by two different parts, the church with its two cloisters and the Emperor's palace. The church is accessed from the outside through a Renaissance doorway. Its Main Altar was ordered to be built by Felipe II in 1580 and the choir stalls, which are Gothic from the 15th century, are also noteworthy. Next to the monks' quarters is the 15th-century Gothic cloister, with direct access to the church. Its rectangular floor plan is due to the expansion suffered at the beginning of the 16th century when the first church was removed and the current one built.
The Gothic cloister communicates with the Renaissance cloister by means of a crossing or simple passage in the northwest. The Renaissance cloister, also called plateresque, was built in the mid 16th century with the economic contribution of King Felipe II and became the monastery's processional cloister. On the southern wall of the church stands the Emperor's Palace, a simple building made of brick, masonry and ashlar. The two floors that make up the house have a similar layout, a central corridor and two rooms on either side. In the King Carlos I bedroom a window opened to the church allowed the monarch to follow the religious cults from his bed. From the viewpoints of the royal apartments you can enjoy the gardens and the pond where the king walked whenever the drop allowed him. You can also visit the crypt of the church where Carlos V wanted to be buried. The palace had very little furniture calling attention to the articulated chair, for the rest of the monarch, paintings, weapons and above all a valuable clock of the year 1562 built in gold and platinum.
The pond where the Emperor liked to fish may have been the indirect cause of the monarch's death as Carlos V died of malaria and most probably became ill from the bites of the mosquitoes in this pond.
On the road that goes from Cuacos de Yuste towards the Monastery of Yuste and very close to it is the German Cemetery of Yuste. A lonely and peaceful place where the mortal remains of German soldiers who fell in the first and second World Wars rest. Specifically there are 28 soldiers from the First World War and 154 from the Second World War. The bodies of these soldiers, sailors and airmen who were killed in Spanish territory due to shipwrecks or aircraft shootings, were initially scattered around various cemeteries in Spain, until in 1980 the German government decided to gather them in one place and began work on this cemetery which was inaugurated three years later, on June 1, 1983 with the assistance of representatives of the German Embassy, Spanish authorities and family members who had come from Germany. In the cemetery there is a plaque written in German whose inscription ends with the phrase:"... Remember the dead with deep respect and humility."
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Carlos V of Germany and I of Spain stipulated in his will where he wanted his coffin to be located within the crypt he had built for this purpose. He wanted it to be placed so that when the priest was officiating mass on the upper floor it would stand right over his body. But the monarch died before the construction of the crypt was completed so he was buried behind the Main Altar of the church and later his son Felipe II moved his remains to the El Escorial Monastery.
Cuacos de Yuste is located on the EX-203 road that connects it to Plasencia on one side and to the N-502 road between Ávila and Talavera de la Reina on the other. Also from Naval Moral de la Mata we can reach Cuacos de Yuste following the EX119 to Jarandilla de la Vera and from there to Cuacos de Yuste. Similarly, from the N-110 shortly after leaving Plasencia in the direction of Ávila, we can get there by following the local roads that connect the villages of Valle del Jerte with those of Valle de la Vera.
From Cuacos de Yuste itself, just as we arrive in the town from Plasencia, the road ascends to the Monastery of Yuste. Once there, we will have a large car park where we can park our vehicle and carry out the visit. The local road that connects with the town of La Garganta de la Olla also reaches this point.
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