Jornets: the measure of simplicity









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Jornets: the measure of simplicity

Jornets is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful villages on the island. It is an ensemble on a human scale, based on the dictates of history, property, oratory, painted tiles… To discover Jornets is to understand the virtue of frugality and, above all, the overwhelming beauty of simplicity, of what has survived under the compass of everyday life. Few places preserve the essence of the Mallorca of yesteryear like this place. Here we have a short but intense route in the centre of the island.

We start the route in this small village on Carrer Major, at the junction with Carrer de sa Quintana, where we find Plaça de Jornets. The first building that stands out is undoubtedly the Oratory of Sant Josep.



The Oratory of St Joseph

The construction of this unique oratory began at the end of the 18th century and was inaugurated in 1799. Originally it was the private oratory of the Jornets estate, but with the growth and consolidation of the village it became semi-public. It is a rectangular building with a façade in the Baroque style, albeit simple. The portal has a lintel topped by a niche; above the fanlight there is a mixtilinear head topped by hydria. A bell tower remains in the final section. The interior has a barrel vault, with a large altarpiece dedicated to the titular saint and surrounded by other images.

 Directly on the south side of the square we find a traditional, two-storey building with traditional, rustic furnishings. Although architecturally this house is an interesting example of vernacular architecture, its most remarkable feature is its eaves, as it preserves a beautiful set of painted roof tiles.


Can Nadal (painted roof tiles)

The houses of Can Nadal are an example of popular dwellings consisting of two storeys and where the façade is not mentioned. In the right-hand corner is the doorway with a lowered arch and the door, both whitewashed openings. To the left of the portal is a stone with a colcador. On the first floor there is a window with a parapet and a bay window. However, the painted roof tiles that have been preserved on the eaves stand out from the ensemble. The art of painting roof tiles is a very old practise that has been documented in Muslim Mallorca. It reached its peak between the 17th and 18th centuries and was generally made with red ocher. It was part of the rituals of building or renovating a house. The motifs depicted are geometric, vegetal, religious symbols, dates, etc. In the case of Can Nadal, we can see the anagrams of Jesus and Mary, as well as some floral details.

 In the northern corner of the square is the epicentre of the hamlet: the house of the old Possessió de Jornets, from which the core emerged.


Possessió de Jornets

The property that gives its name to this hamlet has a very ancient origin: the land appears to document the surroundings to the 14th century; a century later the Rafal dels Jornets was mentioned and in 1578 it was divided into four estates. The family that owned the largest part was the Llebrés, who were nicknamed the Jornets. An increase in winegrowing is documented in the 18th century, at which time the cellar was also built. In the 19th century, the Llebrés de Jornets merged with the Planas. The houses, which open onto a wide street, of two storeys high, with a portal is crowned with the Llebrés de Jornets coat of arms and the date 1826. The house has a second portal, this time with a canopy. On the right side there is a sundial and a porch, under which a third doorway with the date 1764 is preserved. The façade has a beautiful sgraffito with staggered motifs that is quite unique.