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The blessing of the animals

Photography by Alfredo Cunha

  • 28 OCT 2021 — 23 JAN 2022 10AM - 6PM

28 Oct 2021 — 23 Jan 202210h – 18h

Tickets: 3€ (grants access to the whole venue)
Available at

Opening 27 OCT | 6:30PM

Free admission, subject to room capacity


In the village of Mixões da Serra, parish of Valdreu, municipality of Vila Verde, the last Sunday before 13 June, the day of Saint Anthony, is marked by the blessing of the animals, a secular tradition. On that day, the square of the Sanctuary of Saint Anthony of Mixões da Serra is filled with devotees who bring cows, horses, goats, dogs, cats and even doves for blessing. The story goes that this blessing guarantees the animals' protection, health and produce such as milk and eggs.

For over 20 years, Alfredo Cunha has photographed this historical pilgrimage of Saint Anthony Mixões da Serra, giving rise to this exhibition now on show at the Museum of Lisbon – Saint Anthony. 

Through Alfredo Cunha's lens and the quality of his work, we are transported to the mystical atmosphere of the Minho mountains, in one of the most extraordinary pilgrimages dedicated to Saint Anthony, revealing the unusual rural aspects of this Saint that in Lisbon is mostly associated with the parades on the Avenida and the popular festivities.

Alfredo Cunha_fotografias (1).jpg

© Alfredo Cunha


© Alfredo Cunha


© Alfredo Cunha

Alfredo Cunha_fotografias (1).jpg

© Museu de Lisboa

  • Saint Anthony


    • 23 JAN 2022 3:30PM
    • 7 NOV 2021 3:30PM

    07 Nov 2021 — 23 Jan 202215h30 – 16h30

    Cults of Saint Anthony