The Pombaline Wave of Development

A new wave of industrial development, seen as necessary because of the announced exhaustion of the Brazilian gold mines, took place after the second half of the 18th century.

The then prime minister of the king D. José I, Marquês de Pombal (the man behind the reconstruction of Lisbon after the earthquake of 1755), encouraged a series of investments in this area, thus lowering the dependence of the country in foreign manufactured goods. He also finished, in fact, with the Inquisition, ended the legal differences between old and new Christians (descendents of Jews), and reformed the educational system. On a less bright side, he persecuted the high nobility and the order of Jesus (who were expelled from Portugal and from its overseas territories), in pursuit of his policy for the reinforcement of the royal power. The relative prosperity of this period was brutally put to a halt with the French invasions, in the aftermath of the French Revolution.

Bird’s eye view of downtown Lisbon in the beginning of the 20th century, showing the urban
rational plan in which Lisbon was constructed after the big earthquake of 1755 that destroyed
most of the city and affected a big part of the country.
Following the ideology of the Enlightenment, the streets follow a grid pattern.
The buildings obeyed to strict norms of height, decoration and anti-earthquake construction techniques.
In, 01/02/2010 .

Chemistry Laboratory, University of Coimbra, currently a Museum of Science.
It was built between 1773 and 1777, during the reformation of the university undertaken by the Marquês de Pombal. It is the most relevant neoclassical building in Portugal. It embodies the ideology of the Enlightenment of a more practical way of teaching science. This laboratory became central in the formation of doctors and pharmaceuticals

Soup tureen from Fábrica Real do Rato (founded in 1767),
one of the industries created during the Marquês de Pombal administration,
in accordance with his politics of diminishing the country’s dependence on manufactured goods.
Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga (MNAA),
in, 01/02/2010 .

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