The site of the cathedral was occupied by a basilica with three naves, destroyed by Almanzor in 925, remains of which are to be found in the subsoil and can be visited, and later by the Romanesque cathedral, begun in 1046 and consecrated in 1058. The present cathedral, begun in 1298, taking advantage of elements of the previous one, consists of three naves and an apse, covered with pointed arches. Most of the church as well as the cloister was built between 1365 and 1388, under the direction of Bernat Roca, the successor to Jacobus Fabre. Although the building was completed in mid-15C, the main facade was not built till the early years of 20C. Among the areas of interest, the most noteworthy are the Romanesque door of San Ivo (Sant Iu), in the older wing, in los Condes Street and the chapel of the Cristo de Lepanto, formerly the Sala Capitular, which is the outstanding part of the whole building, covered with a stellar vault.
The high priest of modernist architecture, Antoni Gaudi, belongs to a distinguished line of creators who over the generations have endowed Barcelona with the world´s most curious mixture of styles. He took charge of work on the Sagrada Familia in 1883, when work had already commenced on the crypt, and gradually he worked on the project more and more until he devoted himself entirely to the work in his last years. The church, which relates architecture to liturgy, was the result of constant meditation, calculation and trials which not only sought to produce innovation in building but also some form of far-reaching wisdom.