Portugal Independence Day 2022: History, Significance and Celebrations

Portugal Independence Day is annually celebrated on 1st December, this day commemorates the Portuguese restoration of independence from Spanish rule

Portugal Independence Day officially known as the Restoration of Independence Day in Portugal is annually celebrated on 1st December. This day commemorates the reinstatement of sovereignty of Portugal from the Spanish rule in 1668. 

Portugal was ruled by the Spanish Habsburg dynasty between 1580 and 1640 after the two countries formed a dynastic union following the Portuguese Succession Criss and the ensuing war. While the first six decades of Habsburg rule were fairly well accepted by Portuguese society, the ascension of Phillip III (Phillip IV of Spain) proved to be fatal for the Iberian Union.

Portugal Independence Day is a public holiday in the country and all schools and businesses stay shut. The day is celebrated with great fanfare in the country.  

Event Portugal Independence Day
Date December 1, 2022
Day Thursday
Significance The day day commemorates the reinstatement of sovereignty of Portugal from the Spanish rule.
Observed by Portugal

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Portugal Independence Day History: 

In 1581, Portugal came under Spanish rule because the king died without appointing an heir. For the next 60 years, Portugal remained under Spanish control. The King of Spain, Philip II, seized this regal vacuum and invoked his right to succession - he was the grandson of D. Manuel I of Portugal. He ascended to the throne and managed to achieve an Iberian Union for the first and only time. With Philip II as King, Portugal became involved in a war with the traditional enemies of Spain, such as England and the Low Countries. Portugal lost a great part of its naval fleet and much of its empire - though they did manage to thwart Dutch ambitions in Africa and South America.

However, discontent amid the Portuguese crept in when the Spanish increased taxes on Portuguese merchant ships, and attempts were made to make Portugal a region of Spain. The situation took a turn for the worse when the Portuguese nobility lost its influence in Madrid and Portugal. This tense succession of events resulted in a revolt that led to the Portuguese Restoration War, also known as "The Acclamation War," of December 1, 1640. Both the year and the date of the revolt have significance. The Portuguese chose December 1 since the Spanish nobles in Portugal would be going home for Christmas and 1640 was chosen because it was also the year when a revolt broke out in Catalonia, Spain. 

The war lasted for 28 years, till Spain recognized Portugal's independence in 1668. Portugal had already emerged as a colonial power, the Spanish army was preoccupied with Catalonia during that time, and wars were going on with the Germans, French, English, and Dutch as all of these helped Portugal secure its independence. The 28 years of wars, however, did not include many major battles. In fact, there were only five major battles. The war was mostly made up of small skirmishes and raids. The English and Dutch also helped Portugal during the conflict, to weaken their common enemy. The Portuguese House of Braganca ascended the throne of Portugal after the Spanish were forced to leave. 

For Portugal, its restoration of independence from Spain was clearly established, and it proved that it could fend for itself, albeit with difficulty. Its victories on the battlefield had re-awakened Portuguese nationalism. More importantly, after 1668, Portugal, determined to differentiate itself from Spain, turned to Western Europe, particularly France and England, for new ideas and skills. This was part of a gradual "de-Iberianization", as Portugal consolidated its cultural and political independence from Spain. Later Portugal became extremely influential when they established various colonies across the world.  


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Portugal Independence Day Significance: 

This event is very important part of Portugal's history and that's why it must be remembered and acknowledged as this was one of the greatest turning point not just for Portugal but for the whole world. As Portugal was one of the first country which began the exploration of the New World and later became a extremely powerful colonial power with colonies in countries like Brazil, Angola, etc. So this tiny country played a very important role in shaping our world's history and that's why this part of its history is very important. 

Portugal was a formidable colonial power and altered the history of many nations around the world. Portugal Independence Day is an acknowledgment of the day that would affect so many regions across the globe. The biggest legacy which Portugal left is in the form of Brazil which is today one of the biggest countries in the world in both in terms of population and area as well. So if Portugal remained under Spanish rule for long or forever then so much of our today's world would have changed which is fascinating to think! 

This day also serves as an opportunity for the Portuguese people to feel proud towards their past glory and also to recognize the bravery and sacrifice made by their ancestors in keeping the Portuguese identity alive! So this day also inspires the young Portuguese to take pride in their identity be it culture or language. It also makes them realize about the importance of being independent as their ancestors had to fight a long and tough battle for keeping themselves independent and thus freedom must not be taken lightly. 

Although today Portugal is not a large and powerful empire like in the past but Portugal is still an important center for tourism, sports, and food of the world, and it is also involved in international peacekeeping missions. On Portugal Independence Day, we celebrate a beautiful country with beautiful people. At present Portugal is small but still ot holds a large cultural influence around the world especially in its former colonies like Brazil. So this day celebrates both past glory and present scenario of this beautiful country.  

Portugal Independence Day Celebrations: 

Use this opportunity to visit this beautiful country! Portugal has emerged as a top tourist destination in Europe, thanks to its beautiful churches, palaces, and castles. To celebrate Portugal Independence Day, visit Portugal. And if you are from Portugal then use this occasion to visit some of the most important historical and cultural sites of the country. 

This day in an awesome opportunity for people to try some delicious Portuguese food! Portuguese cuisine is known all over the world for its exquisite flavors. Doesn't matter if you cannot travel to Portugal to celebrate Portugal Independence Day, use this opportunity to celebrate the day by enjoying some classic Portuguese dishes like peri-peri chicken, pastel de nata and many more. 

No sport is as big as football in Portugal. The national team is a source of pride and the country is home to many football stars. Celebrate Portugal Independence Day with a game of football. You are actually very lucky this year as the Fifa World Cup is currently going on so watch and support the Team Portugal this World Cup! 

You can also use this opportunity to learn more about culture and history of this nation. As said earlier that Portugal had created a large impact all over the world especially during the Portuguese Empire period so there is a lot to explore for this nation's history. Portuguese culture is also very beautiful so take a time to learn some about it as well. 

Most Searched FAQs on Portugal Independence Day: 

1. When is Portugal Independence Day celebrated? 

Portugal Independence Day is annually celebrated on 1st December. 

2. How old is Portugal? 

The borders of Portugal were defined in 1139 CE, meaning it is officially the oldest nation in Europe. Before the country was acknowledged as Portugal, the area had passed through the hands of many empires and civilizations. Its capital city Lisbon is known to be much older than Rome. 

3. What currency does Portugal use? 

Portugal uses the Euro as its currency. 

Hello I am one of editors of merazone.com, our blogs are mostly event-blogging only so keep in update with us to know about all the important events

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