Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Portugal - Independence Day

On the 5th of October 1143, or 868 years ago, the peacy treaty of Zamora (in Spain) was signed by Afonso I, known as Dom Afonso Henriques and his cousin Afonso VII of Leon and Castile, signalling the Afonso dinasty. Portugal became then an independent Kingdom and the oldest European nation.
For some unknown reason it's a date that is not overly celebrated in Portugal.

It's now been just over 4 years since I left Portugal and immigrated to Australia and although I do love living here I miss the charm of the old country a little bit, Australia's history is so recent compared with European history...

So I leave you with a few photos of Lisbon's old and historical buildings.
Happy Birthday Portugal.
Mosteiro dos Jeronimos -  Jeronimos Monastery, Belem
Praca do Comercio - Commerce Square
Torre de Belem - Belem Tower

Old Lisbon suburb in one of the seven hills surrounding Lisbon
Elevador da Bica - Funicular in one of the suburbs


  1. So glad to see you also celebrate our independence day! I do it since I have my blog! We are the oldest European nation and that deserves always a celebration! :-) Yesterday, I published also some photos I took in Lisbon last September when I was there. Our capital is so lovely and beauiful! The most beautiful! My heart talking :-)))

  2. Sim aproveitei para por algumas fotos,mas apercebi-me q nao tenho muitas digitais tenho q fazer o scan delas. Lisboa tem o seu charme e maravilhosos monumentos.

  3. Lindas fotos da minha cidade! :-)

  4. There's a clear reason to not celebrate Zamora as the "independence day" since Portugal can choose many other dates and there's still no real consensus regarding this issue, and probably never will be.

    First of all even Zamora cannot be considered a "signed peace treaty" since the text doesn't even exist and the "conference between parts" is only known by secondary sources.

    In the past 200 years, many people interpreted Zamora in different ways, and indeed a "signed peace treaty" was one of them but today Zamora's importance it's considered just another step in the ladder of the process of independence.

    For instance, just a couple of months after Zamora, D. Afonso Henriques clearly broke the "supposed rules" of the Conference of Zamora.

    Things in Middle Ages were different from our time, and this struggle was complex and did have many different players.

    There's no ultimate reason to celebrate Zamora as "de facto" or "de jure" Portugal's day of independence. There are other texts (that still exist today) which have the same weight in this long term process. It's far more important the whole vision of it than the particular vision regarding only one text.

    Celebrating Zamora may be considered just an anti-Republic propaganda, since the conference was in 4th-5th October 1143 and the Republic was declared in 5th October 1910 or just typical anti-Castilian propaganda and well utilized by the late dictatorship.

  5. Oh, by the way, i forgot: you clearly don't understand Lisbon, sorry. There's no suburbs inside the city.

    That pictures are from the historical centre of the city, not "suburbs". That doesn't make any sense.


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