The Chapter of the Cathedral of Évora was established by the Bishop D. Paio, on 24 April 1200, being thus, one of the most ancient institutions of the city.
From its origins, it is in charge of ensuring the worship in the Cathedral, the mother-church of the Diocese and of collaborating with the Bishop in the administration of the Diocese. It became the institution with the most notoriety in the city, due to its religious, cultural and social activity.
Up until the 19th and early 20th centuries, when the political power took over its properties and possessions, it was the most renowned institution in life of the city.
The accumulation of such a highly artistic and cultural value, which can be seen in the Museum of Religious Art, is owed to the Chapter.
The clergy or chapter delegates is the group of priests which compose the Chapter.
Nowadays, there are fourteen members, with the following dignities stading out in the organisation: the dean, who presides; the chanter or vice-president; the paymaster general; and the secretary.
After reaching seventy-five years of age, they become emeritus. By dint of circumstances, it is not possible to dedicate one’s whole life to the life of the Cathedral, but they become responsible for its activities.
Throughout the times, its number and organization varied.
For centuries, they dedicated themselves to the life of the Cathedral, praying and chanting together.
The liturgy of the Cathedral, whether it was weekly or on Sundays, was lived with high solemnity. The music became so important that, between the 16th and 19th centuries, Évora and the School of Music of the See took the name of Évora to the great cultural centres of Europe.
Canons or capitulars is the group of priests which compose the Chapter
Dean: Canon Eduardo Pereira da Silva
Chanter: Canon Manuel da Silva Ferreira
Paymaster General: Canon Francisco Hipólito Santanita Machado Couto
Secretary: Canon José António Morais Palos
THE REMAINING CHAPTER DELEGATES
Canon Silvestre António Ourives Marques, Canon Fernando Gonçalves Afonso, Canon Manuel Maria Madureira da Silva, Canon Francisco Pimenta Alves Bento, Canon António Salvador dos Santos, Canon Mário Tavares de Oliveira, Canon Júlio Manuel Roxo Rodrigues, Canon Elias Serrano Martins, Canon António Pereira Sanches; Canon Carlos Manuel Antunes Cardoso de Melo.
The council of the councillors of the Bishop is made up of 14 members of the Chapter.
By decision of the Portuguese Episcopal Conference, the Chapter in Portugal, where it exists, is composed of the Board of Consultants of the Bishop of the Diocese.
In certain administrative acts, the Bishop is required to hear the Consultants and to subject himself to their decision. In the Diocese of Évora, the Chapter has that mission.