VILLANUEVA DE ALGAIDAS
To Jose Luis Ruedas Lopez who sent us the photos on this page.
Eremitic ensemble formed by two independent cavities carved in the sandstone rock that was used by the Mozarabs in the 9th and 10th centuries, although perhaps it existed since the time of the hermitic flowering on the peninsula during the Visigoth monarchy.
Located very close to the remains of the Franciscan convent of Our Lady of Consolation, it is presented externally as a set of two semicircular arch-shaped entrances with two rectangular windows on its sides, located all on the west side of a rocky massif.
The two spaces are of different size and purpose: the largest, about 50 m2, consists of a nave and two other townhouses on its north side which are accessed by two openings from the main nave. This one is rectangular in shape. covered by a barrel vault and with a shallow apse located on the east side, with the altar framed by an arcosolio, located on the east side. The access is made by an arch in a bay on the west side closed by a factory wall. On its north side there are two openings that give access to two ships. The closest to the apse would be the sacristy and the farthest the baptistery, since at one end there is a carved pool in which there is a water inlet.
The other space, only about 7m2 in area, is also rectangular in shape, with access also in a semicircular arch and a rectangular window on the west side, it could be an eremitic cell for the room of some hermitages. In the excavations ceramic remains have been found that place it as inhabited at the same time as Bobastro, located about 50 kms, so it must have belonged to the territory then dominated by Omar Ibn Haffsun in his war against the Umayyads.
R. Puertas Tricas, 2006: Iglesias rupestres de Málaga, CEDMA, Málaga, 209-228.