We set out at daylight, and about ten miles distance, we stopped a short time at a farm house, named Curtomi; we then proceeded ten miles further to Grandie. Just before we arrived at this place, about four miles and a half distant, the road from Rio over the Campos, and the Caminha Real, or Royal road, from Porta de Estrella meet, forming one main road from hence into the interior.

Caminha lies on the Portuguese side of the estuary of the Minho, close to its mouth, and the church was begun in 1488, but was not finished till the next century, the tower indeed not being built till 1556. Like the others, the plan shows a nave and rather narrow aisles of five bays, and two square vaulted chapels with an apsidal chancel between to the east.

to be left to a chapter dealing with what is usually called the Manoelino style that strange last development of Gothic which is found only in Portugal but it is in many respects so like the choir chapels of the church at Caminha, and has so little of the usual Manoelino peculiarities, that it were better to describe it now.

His first care after this formality was accomplished was to despatch Gaspard de Lemos to Lisbon, to announce the discovery of this rich and fertile country. Lemos took with him the narrative of the expedition written by Pedro Vaz de Caminha, and an important astronomical document, the work of Master Joao, in which was doubtless stated the exact situation of the new conquest.

In that hall swans may have first been painted for Dom João, but the roof has clearly been remade since then, possibly under Dom Manoel. The gilt ornament on the mouldings seem even later, but may of course have been added afterwards, though it is not very unlike some of the carving on the roof at Caminha, an undoubted work of Dom Manoel's time.

The simple boarding of the earlier roofs may well have led to the two wonderful ceilings at Cintra, those in the Sala dos Cysnes, and in the Sala dos Brazões or dos Escudos, but the idea of the many octagons in the Sala dos Cysnes may have come from some such roof as that at Caminha, when the octagons are so important a feature of the design.

From such simple panelled ceilings the splendid elaboration of those in the palace at Cintra was derived. The roofs at Caminha and at Funchal are rather different. At Caminha the roof is divided into bays of such a size that each of the three divisions, the two sloping sides and the flat centre under the collar ties, is cut into squares.

The wooden ceilings of as late as the middle of the seventeenth century may show no Eastern detail, yet in the method of their construction they are all ultimately descended from Moorish models. Such ceilings are found all over the country, but curiously enough the finest examples of truly Eastern work are found in the far north at Caminha and in the island of Madeira at Funchal.

The chancel, which is rather deeper than usual, is entered by a wide foliated arch, and like the apsidal chapels is vaulted. As at Caminha, the nave roof is of Moorish design, but of even greater interest are the reredos and the choir-stalls.

Other beautiful tiled interiors are those of the Matriz at Caldas da Rainha, and at Caminha on the Minho. Without seeing these tiled churches it is impossible to realise how beautiful they really are, and how different are these tiles from all modern ones, whose hard smooth glaze and mechanical perfection make them cold and anything but pleasing.