The Murder at Ermita de la Trinitat
On the evening of April 7th, 1872, Cecile de Marie was raped, murdered, and mutilated by one of the monks of Ermita de la Trinitat on her way home along the Moro trail between Valldemossa and Deia.
Miss Cecile worked as a young maid at the Bauzà estate in Deia and knew the trail that took her from her family home in Valldemosa, past the chapel, and down through the forest beneath the north side of the Talaia Peak, by heart. Every morning, through winter and rain, mud and snow, or beneath the burning summer sun, she carried the basket her mother prepared with bread, cheese, and olives, and every evening she returned with daily supplies from the local market.
The young monk Ernesto Sanches had been placed in the monastery as a favor from the Abbott to his father, Señor Mateo Sanches, who had grown impatient with the young boy’s incapability of choosing a craft.
Señor Sanches, a beloved stonemason at the time, refused to watch his son take over the masonry with neither interest nor skill. And after helping the monks repair the eastern wall, he allegedly pledged to the Abbott to relieve him of these painful thoughts and offer his son the firm hand of the secluded monastery.
The Abbott kindly obliged and had a bed and a cowl prepared for the young man by the following month. But, since young Ernesto lacked all knowledge of anything regarding the daily care of a monastery, he was placed doing the simplest of chores.
The Moro trail stretches beneath the Talaia Peak and passes the chapel alongside the southern wall. As you pass the main gate, there’s a sudden view of the sea, and the otherwise shaded trail opens up as a bright welcome. There’s a well there for those who arrive thirsty and benches among the trees for those who need a rest.
On the evening of April 7th, when Cecile de Marie was on her way home, young Ernesto, who had spent enough time doing nonsensical jobs to learn her routines, waited further up by the wall, right where the trail disappeared back into the shades.
The attack was immediate.
Miss Cecile was grabbed and slammed several times into the wall before Ernesto…