Jesuit Missions of the Guaranis: San Ignacio Mini

The ruins of São Miguel das Missões in Brazil, and those of San Ignacio Miní, Santa Ana, Nuestra Señora de Loreto and Santa María la Mayor in Argentina, lie at the heart of a tropical forest. They are the impressive remains of five Jesuit missions, built in the land of the Guaranis during the 17th and 18th centuries. Each is characterized by a specific layout and a different state of conservation.


The remains of these Jesuit missions are outstanding examples of a type of building and of an architectural ensemble which illustrate a significant period of the history of Argentina and Brazil. The ruins of Saõ Miguel das Missões in Brazil and those of San Ignacio Miní, Santa Ana, Nuestra Señora de Loreto and Santa María la Mayor in Argentina lie in the heart of a tropical forest. They are impressive remains of five Jesuit missions, built in the land of the Guaranis during the 17th and 18th centuries.

All these Guarani reducciones (settlements) are laid out on the same model: the church, the residence of the Fathers, and the regularly spaced houses of the Indians are laid out around a large square. However, each of the reducciones is characterized by a specific layout and a different state of conservation.

San Ignacio Miní, founded in 1611, was moved on two successive occasions, settling in its present site in 1696. It incorporates important monumental remains: churches, residence of the Fathers, schools. The ruins are accessible and in a relatively good state of preservation. It is the most eminent example of a reduccion preserved on Argentinean territory. (UNESCO)

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