Lisbon, Portugal

Rossio (or Pedro IV) Square, Lisbon, Portugal, ca. mid 20th c., by Estúdio Mário Novais, via Art Library of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation Commons on flickr (under CC license).

The Rossio has been an important central Lisbon square since the 14th century. Rossio roughly means “commons.” Its current appearance, however, was formed in the mid (paving) and late (fountains and column) 1800s.

The distinctive paving — calçada Portuguesa — is made up of small irregular cobblestones of white limestone and black basalt.  In 1842, the governor of São Jorge Castle, Eusebio Furtado, set prisoners to work laying an unusual zigzag pattern on its parade ground. The effect was so popular that in 1848 Furtado was asked to use the same sort of design (and prisoners) on the Rossio Square.  After that, “Portuguese pavement” spread across the city and country and ultimately out to the colonies of Brazil and Macau.

Although beautiful, it’s said to be extremely slippery when wet.

Lisbon, Portugal

Luís de Camões Square, Lisbon, between 1933 and 1983, by Estúdio Mário Novais, via Art Library of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation Commons on flickr, under CC license.

The 1867 sculpture is of Camões, a 16th century epic poet. The square looks much the same today, but the design of the paving tile (Portuguese pavement or calcada Portuguesa) is different.

Life in gardens: Lisbon

library-garden-Jardim-França-Borges-in-1949A library garden (Biblioteca de jardim) in the Jardim do Principe Real, Lisbon, Portugal, in 1949.*

Wonderful.

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find out anything about Lisbon’s library gardens.  A comment on the flickr page said that they had been abolished in 1980.

Jardim do Principe Real is also called Jardim França Borges in honor of a Republican journalist, whose bust was placed there in 1915. The 2.9 acre (1.2 ha.) park in the Mercês parish was landscaped in a romantic design in the mid-19th century.

library-garden-Jardim-França-Borges-in-1949Reading under the cedar of Buçado, above, in the Jardim do Principe Real, Lisbon, Portugal, 1949.

The cedar† and the pretty iron structure supporting its 78′ (23 m.) diameter still stand in the park.

Library Garden Julio de Castilho, 3 the Mirador de Santa Luzia, in 1949.Above is the Julio de Castilho library garden  at the Mirador de Santa Luzia, overlooking the Tagus River in Lisbon, also in 1949.

He who has a garden and a library wants for nothing.
― Cicero


*All photos here taken by Estúdio Mário Novais, via Art Library Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian Commons on flickr.*

†One source called it a Mexican white cedar.