By Juan Manuel Rodriguez Caso

Patio del Edificio Carolino

Not so far from Mexico City is Puebla, a place famous for its beautiful centre, plenty of well conserved and beautiful buildings from the Spanish Conquest.

Carolino Building is considered one of the oldest and most beautiful buildings in the city. Its aesthetic quality is manifested in its pillars, arches, cornices, window framing, the rails and finials. Its main rooms: the Baroque Hall Auditorium and the Paranymph of exceptional beauty, also in Lafragua library are saved important ancient books of great documentary value. The main staircase is large and is decorated with a series of paintings that recall the patronage of King Charles III. The Royal Caroline College of the Holy Spirit was founded by Melchor de Covarrubias in 1578 and its administration was in charge of the Jesuits. After the order expulsion in 1765 and his return in 1819 were they in charge of several schools teaching, and this was the largest due its magnitude.

Guarda historia, Edificio Carolino

After Independence was called Imperial College and in 1825 by decree of State Congress its administration pass to Puebla state government. In 1835 it was called State College, changing its name several times until in 1937 he became the University of Puebla and in 1956 founded the now Autonomous University of Puebla, the main scientific and cultural polo of the state and one of the most important of the country.

The front of the building of two levels was built entirely with marble, and there are five windows and beautiful boxed bars. A half of the facade is a plaque dedicated to the Jesuit Juan Gomez. A heavy cornice separates the two levels, with seven balconies and framed windows with jambs, guarded by beautiful wrought iron. In the central top is located the National Emblem on the right arm of the University and Puebla and on the left the shield of the State College. The monumental staircase is formed of three sections in a “Y”, carved in stone gray and iron railing.

The courtyard is framed by Tuscan columns supporting stone arches, the roof is formed by cross vaults. In the second windows you can admire jambs pediment topped by a small cut. This set is topped by a cornice count uproots a balustrade with vases and gargoyles in the form of cannon. Past the lobby is the second court. Where is a statue of College of the Holy Spirit founder, Miguel Covarrubias.

In the place where the domestic chapel was now is the Baroco Hall. The “silería” (a place where subterraneous granaries are made) that adorns it was furnished with Baroque chairs that belonged to the College of Saint Pantaleon. In the background is a wooden altar with images of Melchor de Covarrubias, and bishops Juan de Palafox, Domingo Pantaleón and Idelfonso de la Mota with their Episcopalian shields. The decoration of the vaults is covered by branches and leaves with shell ornaments, fruits, flowers, cloth, scrolls, Plateresque cherubs.

On its walls are set of chairs made with cedar on neoclassical style. At the top, in a canopy, the bust of St. Thomas Aquinas, and in the middle part is the coat of arms of the city of Puebla. José María Lafragua library holds a number of important collections of old books and its rich literature makes it one of the most important in Mexico.