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This immense house of worship was completed in 1760 on the site of a Franciscan convent that, tradition has it, was founded by St. Francis of Assisi himself in 1217. The basilica served as Madrid’s leading church until 1993, when Catedral de la Almudena was finished after more than a century of construction. The basilica boasts several architectural superlatives (largest cupola in Spain, for example), and it has some wonderful art, including the recently restored ceiling murals of Mary Queen of Heaven.