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Speak Portuguese in Spain – Observer



Speak Portuguese in Spain - Observer

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On Sunday, May 8th, I finished my first tour of Seville. I was lucky to be recommended at this time of the year, during a big fair – a kind of Goleg – that takes place in the Triana area. Wandering the streets of this beautiful city, I could not help thinking how lucky Seville was not to suffer from the catastrophe that befell Lisbon in November 1755. According to Mark Molesky, we can conclude that Lisbon in 1754, known as “little Rome”, would have equaled or surpassed it in grandeur.

It was fun to speak Portuguese in Seville, as it was in Barcelona, ​​Madrid. and in the Basque Country. The truth is that if we make an effort, the Spanish will accept and understand Portuguese if we speak slowly, clearly saying what we want to say. After all, if we don’t speak Portuguese to the Spaniards, who will do it for us? I am not criticizing our tendency to speak “Portuguese” – indeed, many words are similar. I regard this inclination of ours as a courtesy on our part.

Spaniards have reason to be proud of their culture. A person can only be blinded by looking at the gigantic cathedral and its Giralda, the palace of the House of Telmo, the contents of the palace of the Countess Lebrija, the Real Alcazar of Pedro I of Castile and the beautiful and dangerous spectacle of a bullfight. on foot with wild bulls without filed horns – although sometimes the slaughter of a bull in the arena, when it is done imperfectly, reveals obvious suffering on the part of the bull, already with a sword stuck in it.

However, a significant part of Spain’s national pride is associated with quicksands, almost mythological. The Spaniards like to think they were great maritime discoverers – they talk about the “race” of maritime discovery between Portugal and Spain in the 16th century, saying they were the ones who discovered Brazil – they even change the name of one of our somewhat great ones, Fernand de Magalhaes, emphasizing that from 1518 he became a subject of Charles V, as if this had anything to do with the feat he had accomplished.


Everything Magalhães knew about navigation, he learned in Portugal. It could only, given that in 1519, when they began their circumnavigation, the Portuguese had already reached Brazil, West Africa, East Africa, the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea, India, Southeast Asia and China, and the Spaniards were still only able to move between Europe and America. The only sea we did not cross was the Pacific Ocean.

In fact, according to Pigafetta, it can be concluded that Magellan’s circumnavigation was more difficult because it was made in the service of the crown of Castile, since not only the ships entrusted to him were of lower quality than those used for sailing in service. Portuguese crown, since the start of the voyage was delayed because the neighboring kingdom did not have enough capable navigators for a voyage of this magnitude and, therefore, had to resort to hiring foreigners. Without Magellan, as well as without the luck of the Genoese Columbus, who knocked on their door after our Perfect Prince sent him for a walk, the Spaniards would not have reached America and would not have participated in the first circumnavigation of the world.

Columbus himself, as Rebecca Katz wrote, learned everything he knew about navigation in Portugal. I could only because when Cristovan started visiting his cartographer brother Bartolomeu in Lisbon in the 70s of the 15th century, we had already arrived in Angola, and before 1492, more precisely in 1488, Dias had already crossed the Cape of Good Hope. In fact, as Roger Crowley wrote, it was the return of Dias that made João II definitively reject Cristovan, who had meanwhile married a Madeiran noblewoman Filipa Perestrelo in 1479 and took part in the mission to build a fort. San Jorge da Mina in 1482. It was in these wanderings that he came up with the idea of ​​finding an alternative route to “India”, which he first proposed to the Portuguese monarch in 1483.

One of our mistakes was that we killed our king and his eldest son, in 1908. The end of the monarchy two years later led to a clean attitude towards our past. Today the Portuguese is asked to whom he owes his freedom, and the answer is April 25th. We forget that we owe our freedom to a series of outstanding personalities that began even before Afonso Henriquez. First of all, the freedom to speak our language and not be forced to speak Castilian like all other peoples in the Iberian Peninsula, be they Catalans, Galicians, Valencians or Basques.

Even the much publicized Iberian Union, which our neighbors never forgot, to the point of continuing to think they were the “owners” of Portugal, is a poorly told story. Anyone looking on the Internet can find a map of the “Spanish Empire”, which includes, since 1580, Portugal and the Portuguese Empire. But, as J. H. Elliot explained, even after we were conquered by the Duke of Alba – and it is true that our elites who were present in the Regency Council, although they did not publicly admit it, were already in favor of the Iberian Union. before Alba came to Lisbon – the draft was passed only after the ratification of 25 articles, a series of concessions that kept Portugal as a de facto autonomous state.

Philip I of Portugal should spend as much time as possible in the kingdom and, if forced to leave, he must hand over the viceroy to a member of the royal family or to a Portuguese. A council of Portugal shall be appointed to conduct all its business in Portuguese. Positions in Portugal and its colonies should only be granted to the Portuguese, and the Portuguese should be appointed to royal houses. Although customs barriers between Portugal and Castile were abolished, Portugal retained its own currency. And trade with his empire would remain solely in the hands of the Portuguese.

The Spaniards “controlled”, so to speak, the Netherlands (1506-1581) and Belgium (1506-1714) longer than Portugal. And Portugal, unlike those countries that are more advanced today than we are, became an independent kingdom in 1128 (the Netherlands in 1581, Belgium in 1830). If we exclude 60 years of Filipe’s reign, we get 834 years of independence. It is a privilege for which the scale of the necessary effort eludes us today. As Anthony Disney said, without the empire, Portugal would not exist today. And the empire was nothing more than a huge effort to preserve our sovereignty. We had Spanish kings, and the Spaniards in the eighteenth century had French kings. However, during the later Napoleonic invasions, we did not lose our sovereignty, unlike the Spaniards.

For about 100 years, between the mid-1480s and 1580s, Portugal dominated the seas of the world. It is unlikely that, especially after the reign of Manuel I (r. 1495-1521), there was a force on the globe capable of challenging the power of our fleet. In total, Portugal will eventually finance about 50 offshore discoveries. Spain will end up funding only about 10. The numbers for establishing maritime trade routes are also unprecedented. The Dutch also became a maritime power thanks to the knowledge they acquired with us, both in cartography and in shipbuilding techniques. Jan Huygen van Linschoten, a Dutch spy, traveled through the East Indies under Portuguese control and published in Europe important information about Asiatic trade and shipping, which was supported secretly by the Portuguese.

Ever since our academy was purged in 1975 when power moved to the street, it has become fashionable in Portugal to be ashamed of our history. Spinola has already warned of the danger posed to our sovereignty by replacing patriotism with internationalist Marxism. In his pamphlet Portugal and the Future, General de Abril also mentions the dangers of an increasingly ubiquitous state that will make us childish. Today the Belgians and the Dutch, as well as the French and Spaniards, not to mention the British, are immensely proud of their history. With the exception of France, itself a form of presidential republican monarchy, all of these countries are constitutional monarchies. It is imperative, without neglecting the less pure sides of our past, to realize that we were great and that we can still be, if we recognize that we had and that we continue to have this ability, as a free and independent nation-state, where Portuguese is still spoken.

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Santander Foundation Offers Scholarships for Portuguese Language Courses for Ukrainian Refugees



Santander Foundation Offers Scholarships for Portuguese Language Courses for Ukrainian Refugees

Citizens of Ukraine fleeing the war who wish to learn Portuguese can apply for a scholarship from the Santander Foundation, which will offer 12-week online courses run by the Open University.

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PCP Condemns the Portuguese Government’s Commitment to Finnish and Swedish NATO Membership



PCP Condemns the Portuguese Government's Commitment to Finnish and Swedish NATO Membership

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The digital building opens the door to the world and more European and possibly African architects.



The digital building opens the door to the world and more European and possibly African architects.

New Casa da Arquitectura Portal was released this weekend. nicknamed digital building opened its doors to the world for the purpose democratize access researchers and students free of charge in the collection of several leading names in Luso-Brazilian architectureincluding two Pritzker Prize.

Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa and Pritzker 2011 Eduardo Souto de Moura supported launch of this new portal. Both point to a wider European and even African presence on the archival platform currently available from anywhere in the world.

The digital building is a virtual version of the Casa da Arquitectura itself. THIS “live” project and who intends to grow by attracting more international architects, as one of the most emblematic “residents” in the archive, Portuguese Eduardo Souto de Moura, Pritzker Prize 2011the equivalent of the Nobel Prize for World Architecture.

“There is a chance (to shelter) the great Spanish architect. We are waiting for the best funds. Today the Prime Minister came here, this is a good sign for us to become more international in collecting these trophies. Europeans, for now, and possibly Africans,” he said. Golden Lion at the Venice Architecture Biennale 2018.

Souto de Moura’s revelations came a few minutes after Prime Minister of Portugal also mentioned in the microphone to Euronews the desire that this digital Casa da Arquitectura building become the “home” of architects from “other geographic regions”, in addition to the inevitable Portuguese-Brazilian names, already with collections “living” in Matosinhos.

“The fact that this digital building exists and that the collections stored and processed here can be accessed from anywhere in the world opens up the possibility for architects from all over the world to place their assets here. We have two great Brazilian architects here, Lucio Costa and Paulo Mendez da Rocha“said Antonio Costa, a self-proclaimed “friend” of Casa da Arquitectura.

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The Head of Government, accompanied by Minister of Housing Marina Gonçalves, also stressed the European Commission’s commitment to validate and develop European architecture through Program “New Bauhaus”.interdisciplinary initiative aimed at bringing together European green deal to the everyday life of citizens and to the space in which we live.

“Today, fortunately, thanks to the New Bauhaus project, Europe has accepted architecture as a central element in this dual digital and climate transformation process,” the Portuguese Prime Minister explained to us, adding that the idea is to “make architecture the engine of this transformation” and “Europe is committed” to this.

new portal

The doors of the Digital Building were opened in a ceremony led by architect Nuno Sampaio, CEO of Casa da Arquitectura.

(Visit the portal here)

The new portal is a virtual structure with three “floors”: on the first floor there is a new online store where you can purchase unique materials, on the top you can get acquainted with all the activities of the House and virtual visits to ongoing exhibitions. there since 2019 you can consult; in the middle is virtue, that is, the new noble space of the House, overlooking tens of thousands of documents donated or kept in the archive, which is now accessible from anywhere in the world.

Operating Systems already existing collections belong references to Portuguese-Brazilian architecture, with an emphasis on the “pritzkers” Souto de Moura and Paulo Mendez da Rocha, authors, for example, and, respectively, of the Municipal Stadium of Braga and the new Museo dos Coches in Lisbon.

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The digital building also allows access to the careers of Antonio Fortunato Cabral, ARS Arquitetos, Francisco Melo and Jorge Gigante, Gonzalo Birne, João Luis Carrillo da Graça, Pedro Ramalho, Teresa Fonseca, photographer Luis Ferreira Alves and the so-called “father”. Brasilia – Lucio Costa.

Nearly 10,000 documents have been properly completed, scanned and are available for review, and more than 30,000 are still being processed. The House also has space to accommodate much more materials.

The goal is to make Casa da Arquitectura epicenter of global knowledge freely available, which makes education and research in this area more democratic and accessible to all, Timor to Canada via Matosinhos.

Eduardo Souto de Moura believes that the level of Portuguese architecture is high and this new easier access to knowledge development can be beneficial, allowing look to the past to design the future.

“I am convinced that today there are two, three or four names that are identical or superior to American, Japanese or European architects. I hope that while still alive, some time later I will be able to see one of my friends win the Pritzker Prize. There are no two without three,” the 2011 winner joked, also remembering Pritzker 1992, Alvaro Sizaanother “resident” of Casa da Arquitectura, but this time a partial one, yielding the corresponding collection to the Canadian Architecture Center.

Souto Moura recalls that Casa da Arquitectura “began to be the museum of a city that was not even a city like Porto or Lisbon”, it was from Matosinhos, a place of lesser expression than the one mentioned above.

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“With the development of the work of an exceptional team, it has become a Portuguese museum, and with this chance of digitization and globalization, it becomes universal service museum”, sums up the architect, who is also responsible for Crematorium Courtray, Belgium.

For the award-winning Portuguese creative, “the more information, the better the form,” and having this digital building now helps in that sense. “What we want is to have the form of quality so that we can live better. This is the happiness of people,” he said.

The launch of the new portal ended with a debate on the topic “problems of the digital archive”, moderated by José Miguel Rodriguez, from the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Porto, with the participation of Eduardo Saron, from the Brazilian platform Itaú Cultural, the Dutchman Martien de Vletter, from the Canadian Architecture Center, and Nuno Sampaio, Executive Director of Casa da Arquitectura.

The problems start now and go through the dissemination of knowledge about architecture in the four corners of the world in the form encourage research and research at a very low price and even for free.

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