History of Lisbon
- 1 Neolithic era to the Roman Empire
- 2 Medieval Lisbon
- 3 Modern era
- 4 Historical population
- 5 See also
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Neolithic era to the Roman Empire
During the Neolithic the region was inhabited by Iberian related peoples, who also lived in other regions of Atlantic Europe at the time. They built religious monuments called megaliths. Dolmens and Menhirs still survive in the countryside around the city.
Although the first fortifications on Lisbon's hilltop are known to be no older than the 2nd century BC, archaeological research has shown that iron age people have occupied the site since the 8th to 6th centuries BC.
The sufix "ippo" (ipo) present in "Olissipo" (the roman name of Lisbon) is characteristic of Tartessos or Turdetani influence. At best Lisbon was an ancient autochthonous settlement (what the Romans called an Oppidum) that maintained commercial relations with the Phoenicians, which accounts for the presence of Phoenician pottery and other material objects.
Lisbon Castle, site of the earliest settlement in the city
Archeological findings show that a Phoenician influence existed in this location since 1200 BC, leading some historians to the theory that a Phoenician trading post occupied the site of the centre of the present city, on the southern slope of the Castle hill. The magnificent harbour provided by the estuary of the river Tagus made it the ideal spot for a settlement to provide foodstuffs to Phoenician ships travelling to the Tin Islands (modern Isles of Scilly) and Cornwall.
The new city might have been named Allis Ubbo ("safe harbor") in Phoenician, according to one of several theories for the origin of its name. Another theory is that it took its name from the pre-Roman name of the River Tagus, Lisso or Lucio.
Besides sailing to the north, the Phoenicians might also have taken advantage of the situation of the settlement at the mouth of Iberia's largest river to trade with the inland tribes for valuable metals. Other important local products were salt, salted fish and the then widely famous Lusitanian horses.
Recently, Phoenician remains from the 8th century BC were found beneath the medieval Sé de Lisboa (Lisbon See) or main Cathedral of the modern city. Most modern historians, however, consider the supposition of a Phoenician founding of the city as unsubstantiated.
During the Punic wars, after the defeat of Hannibal (whose troops included members of the Conii) the Romans decided to deprive Carthage of its most valuable possession, Hispania (the name given by the Romans to the whole of the Iberian Peninsula). After the defeat of the Carthaginians by Scipio Africanus in Eastern Hispania, the pacification of the West was led by Consul Decimus Junius Brutus Callaicus. Brutus obtained the alliance of Olissipo (which sent men to fight alongside the Roman Legions against the northwestern Celtic tribes) by integrating it into the Empire in 138 BC. He also fortified the city, building defensive city walls against Lusitanian raids and rebellions.
In 31 BC to 27 BC the city becomes a Municipium Cives Romanorum Felicitas Julia Olisipo. Local authorities were granted self-rule over a territory that extended 50 kilometres (31 mi), and it was integrated within the Roman province of Lusitania (whose capital was Emerita Augusta); exempt from taxes, its citizens were given the privileges of Roman citizenship.
Among the majority of Latin speakers lived a large minority of Greek traders and slaves. Lisbon's name was written Ulyssippo in Latin by the geographer Pomponius Mela. The city population is estimated to be around 30,000 at the time.
Earthquakes were documented in 60 BC, several from 47 to 44 BC, several in 33 AD and a strong quake in 382 AD, but the exact amount of damage to the city is unknown.
Fall of the Roman Empire
The Germanic Suebi, who established the Suebic Kingdom of Galicia (modern Galicia and northern Portugal), with its capital in Bracara Augusta (Braga), from 419 to 585, also controlled the region of Lisbon for long periods.
In 457, while Framta was still ruling, Maldras, his rival for the kingship of Galicia, led a large raid on Lusitania. His Suevi troops sacked Lisbon by pretending to come in peace and, once admitted by the citizens, plundering the city. In 468 the city of Lisbon was occupied by the Suebi under Remismund with the help of a native Roman governor named Lucidius.
The Visigoths conquered the city first under the command Euric, and definitely under the rule of Liuvigild. In 585 the Suebi kingdom was included in the Germanic Visigothic Kingdom of Toledo, that comprised all of the Iberian Peninsula. Lisbon was then called Ulishbona.
In approximately 711 Lisbon was taken by the Moors (it was called al-ʾIšbūnah in Arabic الأشبونة), under whose rule the city flourished. The Moors, who were Muslims from North Africa and the Middle East, built mosques, houses and a new city wall (including parts of the old roman fortifications), named the Cerca Moura.
Arabic was forced on the Christians as the official language. Mozarabic was the mother language spoken by the Christian population. Islam was the official religion practiced by the Arabs and Muladi (muwallad), the Christians could keep their religion but under heavy Dhimmi status and were forced to pay the jizyah.
The Moorish influence is still present in Alfama, the oldest existing district of Lisbon that survived the 1755 Lisbon earthquake. Many placenames are derived from Arabic; Alfama, for example, is derived from the Arabic "al-hamma".
The city was conquered and sacked in 796 by Alfonso II of Asturias.
In 843/44 the Vikings sack Lisbon.
The city was conquered and sacked in 955 by Ordoño III of León.
For a brief time during the Taifa period Lisbon was the center town in the Regulo Eslavo of the Taifa of Badajoz while ruled by Sabur al-Saqlabi (Sabur the Slav) son of Sabur al-Jatib, a Slav who had been in the service of al-Hakam II.
The reconquest of Portugal and re-establishment of Christianity is one of the most significant events in Lisbon's history; it is known that there was a bishop in the town who was killed by crusaders and that the population prayed for the intercession of the Virgin Mary when afflicted with plague, indicating that the Mozarab population followed the Mozarabic rite. Arabic lost its place in everyday life. The remaining Muslim population was gradually converted to Roman Catholicism or expelled, and the mosques were turned into churches. (Though in Portuguese historiography this was often mentioned as "turning the mosques back into churches",
File:Sé - Cathedral of Lisbon.JPG|Lisbon Cathedral, built after 1147 over the remnants of the mosque of the Islamic period. File:Statue King Afonso Henriques Portugal.JPG|Statue of King Afonso Henriques, conqueror of the city in 1147 </gallery>
From the Middle Ages to the Portuguese Empire
It received its first Foral in 1179, and became the capital city of Portugal in 1255 due to its central location in the new Portuguese territory.
The first Portuguese university was founded in Lisbon in 1290 by Dinis I of Portugal as Estudo Geral (General Study). The university was transferred several times to Coimbra, where it was installed definitively in the 16th century (today's University of Coimbra).
During the last centuries of the Middle Ages, the city expanded substantially and became an important trading post with both northern Europe and Mediterranean cities.
An earthquake was felt in 1279.
Most of the Portuguese expeditions of the Age of Discovery left from Lisbon during the 15th to 17th centuries, including Vasco da Gama's departure to India in 1497, leading to the creation of the Portuguese Empire.
The 16th century marks the golden age for Lisbon. The city became the European hub of commerce with Africa, India, the Far East and, later, Brazil, exploring riches like spices, slaves, sugar, textiles and other goods. This was the time of the exuberant Manueline style, which has left its mark in two 16th century Lisbon monuments, the Belém Tower and the Jerónimos Monastery, both of which were declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.
Lisbon experienced five important earthquakes in the 16th century (several in 1504, 1528, 1530, 1531 that destroyed 1,500 houses, 1551, and in 1597 when three streets vanished).
Engraved perspective map of Lisbon, 1598: the Terreiro do Paço is open to the Tagus, where ships are moored at anchor
Lisbon experienced three important earthquakes in the 17th century (main one in 1699).
Palace Square of Lisbon in 1650 by Dirk Stoop.
Earthquakes were again felt in 1722, 1724 and in 31 July 1750.
On 1 November 1755 Lisbon was destroyed by another earthquake, which killed between 60,000 and 90,000 people and destroyed eighty-five percent of the city. Among several important structures of the city, the Royal Ribeira Palace and the Royal Hospital of All Saints were lost. The event shocked the whole of Europe. Voltaire wrote a long poem, "Poême sur le désastre de Lisbonne", shortly after the quake, and mentioned it in his 1759 novel Candide (indeed, many argue that this critique of optimism was inspired by that earthquake). Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. also mentions it in his 1857 poem, The Deacon's Masterpiece, or The Wonderful One-Hoss Shay.
After the 1755 earthquake, the city was rebuilt largely according to the plans of Sebastião José de Carvalho e Melo, the Marquess of Pombal; hence the designation of the lower town as Baixa Pombalina (Pombaline Downtown). Instead of rebuilding the medieval town, Pombal decided to demolish the remains of the earthquake and rebuild the downtown in accordance with modern urban rules.
Ribeira Palace of Lisbon in the 18th century
This 1755 copper engraving shows the ruins of Lisbon in flames and a tsunami overwhelming the ships in the harbor
In the first years of the 19th century, Portugal was invaded by the troops of Napoléon Bonaparte, forcing Queen Maria I and Prince-Regent John (future John VI) to flee temporarily to Brazil. During the Peninsular War the city was a base of operations for British and Allied forces under Arthur Wellesley. From 1810 it was defended by the Lines of Torres Vedras.
During the 19th century, the Liberal movement introduced new changes into the urban landscape. The principal areas were in the Baixa and along the Chiado district, where shops, tobacconists shops, cafés, bookstores, clubs and theatres proliferated. The development of industry and commerce determined the growth of the city, extending north along the Avenida da Liberdade (1879), distanciing itself from the Tagus River.
The city refounded its university in 1911 after centuries of inactivity in Lisbon, incorporating reformed former colleges and other non-university higher education schools of the city (such as the Escola Politécnica – now Faculdade de Ciências). Today there are 3 public universities in the city (University of Lisbon, Technical University of Lisbon and New University of Lisbon), a public university institute (ISCTE - Lisbon University Institute) and a polytechnic institute (IPL – Instituto Politécnico de Lisboa). See list of universities in Portugal.
During World War II Lisbon was one of the very few neutral, open European Atlantic ports, a major gateway for refugees to the U.S. and a spy nest. More than 100,000 refugees were able to flee Nazi Germany via Lisbon.
During the Estado Novo regime (1926–1974), Lisbon was expanded at the cost of other districts within the country, resulting in nationalist and monumental projects. New residential and public developments were constructed; the zone of Belém was modified for the 1940 Portuguese Exhibition, while in along the periphery new social barrios appeared to house the growing populations. The first line of the Lisbon Metro opened in 1959. The opening (in 1966) of the bridge over the River Tagus, allowed the rapid connect between the two banks of the river.
Lisbon was the centre of the coup of 25 April 1974 which established the democratic Portuguese Republic. The period following the Carnation Revolution was one of intensive political mobilization, with the city as the stage of many large demonstrations. During 1974 and 1975, many residents of the city's poor neighbourhoods formed resident's commissions to fight for the right to housing and, in some cases, occupied hundreds of vacant properties across the city.
In 1988, a fire near the historical centre of Chiado greatly disrupted normal life in the area for about 10 years. In the 1990s, many of the barrios were renovated and projects in the historic quarters were established to modernize the areas; architectural and patrimonial buildings were recuperated; the northern margin of the Tagus was re-purposed for leisure and residential use; the Vasco da Gama bridge was constructed; and the eastern part of the municipality was re-purposed for Expo '98 (intended to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Vasco da Gama's sea voyage to India). In 1994, Lisbon was the European Capital of Culture.
Parque das Nações (Nations' Park), where the Expo 98 took place and now a venue for important shows and festivals
The Lisbon Agenda was a European Union agreement on measures to revitalize the EU economy, signed in Lisbon in March 2000. In October 2007 Lisbon hosted the 2007 EU Summit, where agreement was reached regarding a new EU governance model. The resulting Treaty of Lisbon was signed on the 13 December 2007 and came into force on 1 December 2009.
On the 7 July 2007, Lisbon held the ceremony of the "New 7 Wonders Of The World" election, in Luz stadium, with live transmission for millions of people all over the world.
It is the host city for the Portuguese editions of Rock in Rio, the largest rock festival in the world.
It hosted the NATO summit (19–20 November 2010), a summit meeting that is regarded as a periodic opportunity for Heads of State and Heads of Government of NATO member countries to evaluate and provide strategic direction for Alliance activities.
The Treaty of Lisbon was signed in Lisbon
|Demographic evolution of Lisbon|
- Mattoso, José (dir.), História de Portugal. Primeiro Volume: Antes de Portugal, Lisboa, Círculo de Leitores, 1992 – in Portuguese.
- Thompson, 167.
- Thompson, 171.
- "Portugal". The Virtual Jewish History Tour.
- Pinto, P. R. (2008). Urban social movements and the transition to democracy in Portugal, 1974–1976. The Historical Journal, 51(4), 1025-46.
- "Welcome to the official global voting platform of". New7Wonders. Retrieved 2009-07-08.
- NATO, NATO Summit Meetings, December 4, 2006