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A camarín is a shrine or chapel set above and behind the altar in a church, but still visible from the body of the church. They are especially found in Spain and Portugal and throughout Latin America. George Kubler and Martin Soria, in Art and Architecture of Spain and Portugal, trace the typology to the mid-15th century Aragonese "viril", a window in the high altar created to display the consecrated host. According to Kubler and Soria, the camarín is first utilized in the Basílica de la Virgen de los Desamparados (Valencia), designed by Diego Martinez Ponce de Urrana 1652–1657. In de Uranna's design, one passes from the oval nave through one of two doorways flanking the high altar. These open on to chambers, at the rear of which stairways lead to the rear of the camarín, so that one emerges into the space looking out on the nave beyond.


Curl, James Stevens (2006). A Dictionary of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (Paperback) (Second ed.). Oxford University Press. p. 880. ISBN 0-19-860678-8.