Art/Architecture Portugal

A Photo Tour of Belem Tower (Lisbon, Portugal)

Just as with the photo essay I published last week on the Jeronimos Monastery I thought I would do the same for the Belem Tower (Torre de Belem), another striking attraction in the Belem parish (Belem is a municipality of Lisbon and is only a short tram ride away from the city center). The tower was built in the early 16th century and was commissioned by King John II to be part of a defense system at the mouth of the Tagus River as well as a ceremonial gateway to Lisbon. It is composed of a bastion (a projecting part of a fortification built at an angle to the line of a wall, so as to allow defensive fire in several directions) and the 100 foot, four story tower. I can just imagine ships sailing into Lisbon centuries ago and this stunning structure being the first thing that they saw.

While the below photo has no stunning qualities to it, 
I wanted to include it anyways since it was so creepy.

Where prisoners were housed in the tower. I can’t imagine being there for months on end…

Can you spot the rhinoceros below? It took me a while to find it…The decorative carved, twisted rope and elegant knots are a reminder of Portugal’s great nautical past and are a common feature in the Manueline style of architecture. 

More in this series!

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1 Comment

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    Moorish Portugal | My great WordPress blog
    May 4, 2014 at 2:04 am

    […] da Roca Cascais, Portugal-a day at the beach Casa Pasteis de Belem Snapshots of Jeronimos Monastery A Photo Tour of Belem Tower (Lisbon, Portugal) Portuguese Food […]

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