It was probably King João III and his wife, Queen Catherine, who ordered the construction of the choir. The monarchs appear at prayer in the two paintings attributed to Cristovão Lopes, the only non-religious works allowed in the choir.
Fitted with simple seating, this was the place where the nuns would meet and could hear mass through a wooden screen that allowed them to see the church without being seen, an essential condition as the convent was cloistered.
The magnificent decoration was begun under King José I between 1746 and 1759. The work bore the mark of the king’s coat-of-arms under the imposing tabernacle in finely carved wood, surmounted by the figures of Faith, Hope and Charity, and the front shows a pelican under the image of God the Almighty.
The name of “The Treasure Room”, also used for this space, is a reference to the profusion of reliquaries, precious signs of faith that are the riches of the Church, placed in display cases above the seating.
However, the decoration suggests the sense of opulence, returning to the Baroque articulation of marquetry using exotic wood on the floor, and gilded carved wood on the cases, reliquaries and painting frames.
Portuguese works from the 17th and 18th centuries cover the upper section of the walls and the ceiling with scenes from the lives of the Virgin and Christ. The main canvas, opposite the imposing tabernacle, shows the Last Supper.
The set of tile panels around the windows is essential for the Baroque nature of the room. The images show eight heroines from the Old Testament, who herald the Virgin and announce her virtues.