PLAZA TIRSO DE MOLINA, PLAZA TIRSO DE MOLINA

Audio File length: 2.35
Author: STEFANO ZUFFI E DAVIDE TORTORELLA
English / USA Language: English / USA

Hi, I'm Ed, your personal guide. Together with MyWoWo, I'd like to welcome you to one of the wonders of the world.

Today I'll take through Plaza Tirso de Molina, which is one of the most attractive points of Madrid!

This square was once called Plaza del Progreso: it marks the northern limit of the "Lavapiés" district, and pays tribute to one of the greatest Spanish poets and playwrights who lived between the 1500s and 1600s. His real name was Gabriel Téllez, and he was a monk in the monastery that once existed here, but the fact that he was a religious man didn't stop Tirso de Molina from inventing one of the most famous characters of erotic literature of all time: Don Juan.

The square was renovated at the beginning of the new millennium, and now with its original urban furnishings, curved street lamps, fountains, and especially its curious kiosks comprising an animated flower market, the square seems to have finally overcome the degradation of previous years and found the splendor of yesteryear. In fact, up to the 1800s this triangular square with its historical coffee shops was a meeting point for writers and artists.

If you want to enjoy a breathtaking view of the square and neighborhood, take Calle Doctor Cortezo and go up to the 6th floor of number 17, the "Casa de Granada": from the magnificent terrace the "Lavapiedi", or foot-washer district as this area is called, will literally be at your feet!

A bit further on almost opposite the Nuevo Apolo Theater, you can see the first stop of the metro line that was inaugurated in 1921 and is one of the oldest in Europe. When they started the excavations, workers found some human skeletons that probably belonged to the friars who had been buried in the cemetery of the monastery that had by then disappeared. They decided to hide the bones behind the tiles lining the station, but since then, reportedly, aside from the screech of wagons, passengers can hear other suspicious sounds!

 

FUN FACT: the super-modern flower market consists of 8 cubes of metal and wood. Each cube has a name taken from the title of one of the works of Tirso de Molina, including of course "Don Juan".

 

Thus ends our visit of Plaza Tirso de Molina in Madrid: MyWoWo thanks you for staying with us, and will see you at the next Wonder of the World!

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