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República Portuguesa (Portuguese)
and largest city
|Recognised regional languages||Mirandese[note 1]|
|Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa|
|Legislature||Assembly of the Republic|
|24 June 1128|
|25 July 1139|
|5 October 1143|
|1 December 1640|
|23 September 1822|
|5 October 1910|
|25 April 1974|
|25 April 1976[note 2]|
|1 January 1986|
• Summer (DST)
|Note: Continental Portugal and Madeira use WET/WEST; the Azores are 1 hour behind.|
|ISO 3166 code||PT|
Portugal (Portuguese pronunciation:
One of the oldest countries in Europe, its territory has been continuously settled, invaded and fought over since
Portugal made numerous discoveries and maritime explorations outside the
By the early 19th century, the accumulative crisis, events such as the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, the country's occupation during the Napoleonic Wars, and the resulting independence of Brazil in 1822 led to a marked decay of Portugal's prior opulence. This was followed by the civil war between liberal constitutionalists and conservative absolutists over royal succession, which lasted from 1828 to 1834. The 1910 revolution deposed Portugal's centuries-old monarchy, and established the democratic but unstable Portuguese First Republic, later being superseded by the Estado Novo (New State) authoritarian regime. Democracy was restored after the Carnation Revolution (1974), ending the Portuguese Colonial War and eventually losing its remaining colonial possessions.
Portugal has left
The word Portugal derives from the combined
Another theory proposes that Cale or Calle is a derivation of the Celtic word for 'port', like the
A further explanation proposes Gatelo as having been the origin of present-day
Around 200 BC, the
The early history of Portugal is shared with the rest of the
The region of present-day Portugal was inhabited by
It is believed by some scholars that early in the first millennium BC, several waves of
Modern archaeology and research shows a Portuguese root to the
Based on the Roman chronicles about the
The first documentary references to Castro society are provided by chroniclers of Roman military campaigns such as Strabo, Herodotus and Pliny the Elder among others, about the social organization, and describing the inhabitants of these territories, the Gallaeci of Northern Portugal as:
"A group of barbarians who spend the day fighting and the night eating, drinking and dancing under the moon."
There were other similar tribes, and chief among them were the
Roman Lusitania and Gallaecia
Romans first invaded the Iberian Peninsula in 219 BC. The Carthaginians, Rome's adversary in the Punic Wars, were expelled from their coastal colonies. During the last days of Julius Caesar, almost the entire peninsula was annexed to the Roman Republic.
The Roman conquest of what is now part of Portugal took almost two hundred years and took many lives of young soldiers and the lives of those who were sentenced to a certain death in the slave mines when not sold as slaves to other parts of the empire. Roman occupation suffered a severe setback in 155 BC, when a rebellion began in the north. The Lusitanians and other native tribes, under the leadership of Viriathus, wrested control of all of western Iberia.
Rome sent numerous legions and its best generals to Lusitania to quell the rebellion, but to no avail – the Lusitanians kept conquering territory. The Roman leaders decided to change their strategy. They bribed Viriathus's allies to kill him. In 139 BC, Viriathus was assassinated and Tautalus became leader of the Lusitanians.
In 27 BC, Lusitania gained the status of Roman province. Later, a northern province was separated from the province of Tarraconensis, under Emperor Diocletian's reforms, known as Gallaecia, with capital in Bracara Augusta, today's Braga. There are still many ruins of castros (
Several works of engineering, such as baths, temples, bridges, roads, circuses, theatres and laymen's homes are preserved throughout the country. Coins, some coined in Lusitanian land, as well as numerous pieces of ceramics, were also found. Contemporary historians include
Germanic kingdoms: the Suebi
In the early 5th century,
About 410 and during the 6th century it became a formally declared Kingdom of the Suebi, where king Hermeric made a peace treaty with the Gallaecians before passing his domains to Rechila, his son. In 448 Rechila died, leaving the state in expansion to Rechiar. Subsequently, this new king started to print coins under his own name, becoming the first of the germanic kings to do so, and then was baptised to Nicene Christianity, probably by the Bishop Balconius, also becoming the first of the germanic kings to do so, even before Clovis, king of the Franks. This bellicose king, almost conquered the whole of Hispania, taking many prisoners and several important cities, but failed to consolidate his conquest over the territory and didn't even came near Tarragona.
After theFrumar (Frumario 459–463) and Remismund (Remismundo, son of Maldras) (459–469) who would re-reunify his father's kingdom in 463. He would be forced to adopt Arianism in 465 due to the Visigoth influence. By 500, the Visigothic Kingdom had been installed in Iberia, it was based in Toledo and advancing westwards. They became a threat to the Suebian rule. After the death of Remismund in 469 a dark period set in, where virtually all written texts and accounts disappear. This period lasted until 550. The only thing known about this period is that Theodemund (Teodemundo) most probably ruled the Suebians.
The dark period ended with the reign of
The Visigothic civil war began in 577, in which Miro intervened. Later, in 583, he also organized an unsuccessful expedition to reconquer Seville. During the return from this failed campaign Miro died, thereby ending the proeminence of the Suebi in hispanic politics, and in two years the kingdom would be conquered by the Visigoths.
In the Suebian Kingdom many internal struggles continued to take place.
For the next 300 years and by the year 700, the entire Iberian Peninsula was ruled by the Visigoths. Under the Visigoths, Gallaecia was a well-defined space governed by a doge of its own. Doges at this time were related to the monarchy and acted as princes in all matters. Both 'governors' Wamba and Wittiza (Vitiza) acted as doge (they would later become kings in Toledo). These two became known as the 'vitizians', who headquartered in the northwest and called on the Arab invaders from the South to be their allies in the struggle for power in 711. King Roderic (Rodrigo) was killed while opposing this invasion, thus becoming the last Visigothic king of Iberia. From the various Germanic groups who settled in western Iberia, the Suebi left the strongest lasting cultural legacy in what is today Portugal, Galicia and western fringes of Asturias. According to Dan Stanislawski, the Portuguese way of living in regions North of the Tagus is mostly inherited from the Suebi, in which small farms prevail, distinct from the large properties of Southern Portugal. Bracara Augusta, the modern city of
Islamic period and the Reconquista
Today's continental Portugal, along with most of modern Spain, was part of al-Andalus between 726 and 1249, following the Umayyad Caliphate conquest of the Iberian Peninsula. This rule lasted from some decades in the North to five centuries in the South.
After defeating the
The governors of the taifas each proclaimed themselves
County of Portugal
An Asturian Visigothic noble named
Pelagius' plan was to use the Cantabrian mountains as a place of refuge and protection from the invading Moors. He then aimed to regroup the Iberian Peninsula's Christian armies and use the Cantabrian mountains as a springboard from which to regain their lands. In the process, after defeating the Moors in the Battle of Covadonga in 722, Pelagius was proclaimed king, thus founding the Christian Kingdom of Asturias and starting the war of Christian reconquest known in Portuguese as the Reconquista Cristã.
At the end of the 9th century, the region of Portugal, between the rivers Minho and Douro, was reconquered from the Moors by the nobleman and knight Vímara Peres on the orders of King Alfonso III of Asturias. Finding that the region had previously had two major cities – Portus Cale in the coast and Braga in the interior, with many towns that were now deserted – he decided to repopulate and rebuild them with Portuguese and Galician refugees and other Christians. Apart from the Arabs from the South, the coastal regions in the North were also attacked by
Count Vímara Peres organized the region he had reconquered, and elevated it to the status of County, naming it the County of Portugal after the region's major port city – Portus Cale or modern Porto. One of the first cities Vimara Peres founded at this time is Vimaranes, known today as Guimarães – the "birthplace of the Portuguese nation" or the "cradle city" (Cidade Berço in Portuguese).
After annexing the County of Portugal into one of the several counties that made up the Kingdom of Asturias, King Alfonso III of Asturias knighted Vímara Peres, in 868, as the First Count of Portus Cale (Portugal). The region became known as Portucale, Portugale, and simultaneously Portugália – the County of Portugal.
Later the Kingdom of Asturias was divided into a number of Christian Kingdoms in Northern Iberia due to dynastic divisions of inheritance among the king's offspring.
With the forced abdication of Alfonso III "the Great" of Asturias by his sons in 910, the Kingdom of Asturias split into three separate kingdoms. The three kingdoms were eventually reunited in 924 under the crown of León.
Independence and Afonsine era
On 24 June 1128, the
Afonso's campaigns were successful and, on 25 July 1139, he obtained an overwhelming victory in the
Afonso then, supposedly, established the first of the
During the Reconquista period, Christians reconquered the Iberian Peninsula from Moorish domination. Afonso Henriques and his successors, aided by military monastic orders, continued pushing southwards. In 1249, the Reconquista ended with the capture of the Algarve and complete expulsion of the last Moorish settlements in the southern coast. With minor readjustments, Portugal's territorial borders have remained ever since, making it one of the oldest established nations in Europe.
In one of these situations of conflict with the
In 1348 and 1349 Portugal, like the rest of Europe, was devastated by the
Joanine era and Age of Discoveries
In 1383, John I of Castile, husband of Beatrice of Portugal and son-in-law of Ferdinand I of Portugal, claimed the throne of Portugal. A faction of petty noblemen and commoners, led by John of Aviz (later King John I of Portugal) and commanded by General Nuno Álvares Pereira defeated the Castilians in the Battle of Aljubarrota. With this battle, the House of Aviz became the ruling house of Portugal.
The new ruling dynasty would proceed to push Portugal to the limelight of European politics and culture, creating and sponsoring works of literature, like the Crónicas d'el Rei D. João I by Fernão Lopes, the first riding and hunting manual Livro da ensinança de bem cavalgar toda sela and O Leal Conselheiro both by King Edward of Portugal and the Portuguese translations of Cicero's De Oficiis and Seneca's De Beneficiis by the well traveled Prince Peter of Coimbra, as well as his magnum opus Tratado da Vertuosa Benfeytoria. In an effort of solidification and centralization of royal power the monarchs of this dynasty also ordered the compilation, organization and publication of the first three compilations of laws in Portugal: the Ordenações d'el Rei D. Duarte, which was never enforced; the Ordenações Afonsinas, whose application and enforcement was not uniform across the realm; and the Ordenações Manuelinas, which took advantage of the printing press to reach every corner of the kingdom. The Avis Dynasty also sponsored works of architecture like the Mosteiro da Batalha (literally, the Monastery of the Battle) and led to the creation of the manueline style of architecture in the 16th century.
Portugal also spearheaded European exploration of the world and the
In 1422, by decree of King John I, Portugal officially abandoned the previous dating system, the
Although for a long period it was believed the Dutch were the first Europeans to arrive in Australia, there is also some evidence that the Portuguese may have discovered Australia in 1521. From 1519 to 1522, Ferdinand Magellan (Fernão de Magalhães) organized a Spanish expedition to the East Indies which resulted in the first circumnavigation of the globe. Magellan never made it back to Europe as he was killed by natives in the Philippines in 1521.
The Treaty of Zaragoza, signed on 22 April 1529 between Portugal and Spain, specified the anti-meridian to the line of demarcation specified in the Treaty of Tordesillas.
All these factors made Portugal one of the world's major economic, military, and political powers from the 15th century until the late 16th century.