Solar dos Pinheiros
Museums and Palaces
Situated in the historic centre, quite close to the parish church, this old 15th-century house is one of the rare examples of mediaeval civil architecture still to be found in Portugal.
Enjoying a privileged view over the river, it was built in 1448 at the orders of D. Pedro Esteves, a doctor of civil and canonical law, although there are some who attribute its construction to his father-in-law, Tristão Gomes Pinheiro. The truth is that the house was the residence of the Pinheiros family, who were governors of Barcelos for many generations.
As was typical at that time, the house consisted of two high towers with a lower central body between them. Attention is drawn to the pointed arches of the doors and an unusual decorative feature on the south-facing tower: a female figure and another bearded male figure. This is thought to be an allusion to "Barbadão" (Bushy Beard), the father of Inês Perez, who, in a furious rage, tried to pull his own beard off when he discovered the illicit love affair between his daughter and the Master of Avis, which resulted in the birth of the first Duke of Bragança, D. Afonso, who was also the eighth Count of Barcelos.
The Pinheiros have been laid to rest in a chapel of the parish church, where their mausoleum can be seen.
(antiga Rua dos Duques de Bragança)