António Machado e Cerveira | Basílica dos Mártires . Lisboa [Portugal]

AXMac Mar João Valério 5_slic crop

Photography by João Valério
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The Basílica dos Mártires organ was built by António Xavier Machado e Cerveira and bears the opus number 3. It was built in 1785, some years after the Lisbon earthquake of 1755, where most of the existing organs were destroyed. Over the keyboard there is the inscription that reads:

“António Xavier Machado e Cerveira o fez
Anno 1785 N.3”

It is one of the bigger and most important organs from Machado e Cerveira, as he started with larger instruments and progressively began to receive smaller organ commissions, ending with dozens of small organs later in his life. The instrument is located in the rear balcony of the church and it is almost intact, as happens with most of the Portuguese organs. The single keyboard is split into bass and treble, following the Iberian organbuilding tradition.

It features an undulating convex baroque case, where horizontal reed pipes follow the wavy shape. All the visible sides of the instrument are decorated and have façade pipes, allowing an extremely tridimensional visual effect as a sculptural piece. Pipe fields are separated by pilasters and pipe mouths are aligned along an horizontal line. The main case is cantilevered over the lower part containing the console. The top center is decorated with two musician angels playing trumpet and viola da gamba, flanking the sunburst of Holy Spirit and a suspended crown. Below the Holy Spirit sunburst there is also a small gilded sculpture with the trumpet and viola da gamba, alongside an open book.


1785 – organ construction
1994 – organ restoration by António Simões


Left hand (C-c’) Right hand (c#’-d”’)
Flautado de 12 aberto Flautado de 24
Flautado de 6 aberto Flautado de 12 aberto
Quinzena Flautado de 12 aberto
Flautado Violão Oitava Real
Flautado de 6 tapado Quinzena
Dozena Flauta Travessa
19.ª e 22.ª Voz Humana
22.ª, 26.ª e 29.ª Compostas de 15.ª
Símbala 12.ª e 15.ª
Sobresímbala 8.ª, 12.ª e 15.ª
Clarão Resímbala
Trompa Real Corneta Real
Trompa de Batalha Corneta
Fagote Trompa Magna

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