Monday 22 November 2010

Azulejos de Lisboa

Tiles like these, called azueljos in Portuguese, decorate many of the buildings in Lisbon.  They were first introduced into the are by the Moors (azulejo comes from an Arabic word) and have been part of the culture ever since, about 500 years. 

Originally they were geometric designs but in the 16th century Portuguese and Flemish artists began to design floral patterns and religious themes and the predominant colour scheme became blue and yellow.  Later, in the 17th century, blue and white became the fashion.  After the earthquake in Lisbon in 1755, multicoloured tiles became popular when many of the houses were rebuilt.  The tiles were very efficient at keeping out the damp and so the tradition of tile-clad houses developed.

There are some incredible examples of blue and white tile panels, such as the ones in the vestibule of the São Bento Station in Porto.  There are 20,000 tiles making up the panels, dating from the early 20th century.

PS  This is my 998th post since I started this blog.  Anyone interested in receiving a card from England should watch out for my 1000th post.
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  1. Sheila I would love to have a card from England. Congratulation of making it this far.

  2. @Odie, it's yours. Just email me to let me have your postal address.

    @Kim, I'll be happy to send you one too. :)


Welcome to my postcard collection! I love hearing what you think of the cards - but spam WILL be deleted.

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