Places of our network of routes: Royal Testamentary Palace of Medina del Campo

Within its walls, Elizabeth I of Castile dictated her will and codicil before her death on 26 November 1504


Medina del Campo treasures many jewels that are part of the history of Spain. One of them is the Royal Testamentary Palace, a place that hosted important events of the Crown of Aragon, as well as being the place where Isabella I of Castile dictated her will before her death.

What was the old Royal Palace of Medina del Campo – declared an Asset of Cultural Interest since 2003 – has now become the Interpretation Centre of Queen Elizabeth I of Castile. Not in vain, this is one of her usual places of residence, as well as being the place where she dictated her will and codicil; and where she also died on 26 November 1504.

Photo: José Manuel Benito

The palace has been historically referred to since the 14th century. In fact, it is mentioned for the first time in a document referring to King Pedro I of Castile; and we also find references to this palace with the stays of different Castilian kings. It should be borne in mind that Medina del Campo was witness to different events, such as royal weddings, court celebrations and major fairs.

Furthermore, this palace was also the residence of her husband, Ferdinand the Catholic, after Elizabet’s death, who transformed the palace, giving it greater grandeur.

Curiously, the last royal event to take place within its walls, after the death of Elizabeth I of Castile, was the proclamation of Juana I, her daughter, as Queen of Castile; and another Isabella also lived here during her stays in Medina del Campo: the Empress and wife of the Emperor Charles V.

Photo: Royal Testamentary Palace of Medina del Campo.

A space, in short, which after its refurbishment in 2003 has become the Interpretation Centre of a character as important as Queen Elizabeth I of Castile. In it, visitors can acquire a global vision of the significance and history of that character through different media: video, interactive material, etc.

Photo: Royal Testamentary Palace of Medina del Campo.

Finally, the centre was extended in 2007 with an interactive room dedicated to the details of Christopher Columbus’ third voyage to America.

SOURCE: Royal Testamentary Palace

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