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Convento de Sao Francisco

The Convento de Sao Francisco is one of the largest monasteries in Olinda and houses one the finest collections of historical manuscripts and books in Brazil. Constructed in 1585, it is the oldest Franciscan Convent in Brazil. It was partially destroyed by the Dutch and was rebuilt in the second half of the 17th century. The Convent was urgently in need of restoration and was on the World Monument Fund Watch List of endangered historic monuments. The Master Plan for the restoration is now complete and was funded by The World Monuments Fund through The American Express Foundation.


The Master Plan received the approval of IPHAN (This Brazilian Government Institute is responsible for ensuring that restoration works adhere to international standards) for implementation on a phased basis. The restoration work included the re-roofing and installation of a new electrical system, exterior redecoration, restoration of ceiling paintings and wall tiles dating from the 17th century.

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