Praça do Comercio (Market Square)
Major historic landmark: this is where the peaceful Carnation Revolution was forged and won.
Baroque arch of victory.
Here, opposite the magnificent Tagus estuary, it took place a momentous even in recent Portuguese history: the Carnation Revolution, which overthrew Marcelo Caetano's government without bloodshed. The Marquis of Pombal, as he built it following the destruction of the Royal Palace that stood on the area in the earthquake that devastated Lisbon in 1775, surely had an inkling of the historical facts the place was poised to witness. Hence its sumptuous Baroque style exemplified in the Victory Arch, designed by Verissimo da Costa and crowned by famous figures such as Vasco da Gama's, the Explorer. Past the arch, the Atlantic breeze takes us back to those times in which the king of Portugal settled there his residence from St. George Castle (lemon yellow of the buildings is the actual colour). An immense horse statue of José I stands in the dead centre of the square. Even if the remaining buildings are currently occupied by ministries, the place remains popular and hosts a broad range of recreational and cultural activities.
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