Palace of the Counts of Coculim in Campo das Cebolas

Phoenicians in Lisbon, at the Palácio dos Coculim

The former Palace of the Counts of Coculim is in Campo das Cebolas in Lisbon. With the earthquake of 1755, this area was destroyed and traces of Phoenician civilization have now been found. The Phoenicians in Lisbon!

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This was the origin of the vegetable market here, previously located in Terreiro do Paço and transferred here, when the court left Castelo de S. Jorge and settled in Terreiro do Paço.

That is why it is called Campo das Cebolas, since the end of the XNUMXth century.

Coculim Palace in Campo das Cebolas

The Coculim Palace dates back to the 1755th century and was almost completely destroyed by the XNUMX earthquake and tsunami that followed it.

The Casa de Linhares, which also collapsed in the 1755 earthquake, is behind and was where the Counts of Linhares lived. Today it is a fado house.

Who were the Counts of Coculim

Conde de Coculim is a noble title created by King D. Afonso VI of Portugal and attributed to D. Francisco de Mascarenhas.

He was the second son of João de Mascarenhas, the 1st Marquis of Fronteira and the title was conferred on him for the services rendered to the Crown in Cuncolim, in the old Portuguese State of India.

Coculim was the name adopted, albeit with an incorrect spelling, as it was originally Cuncolim, in the Municipality of Mullet, an island, northwest of India.

The Count of Coculim inhabited this Palace until the earthquake of 1755, after which he moved with his family from Campo das Cebolas to Fontainhas.

Archaeological research at the Palace of Coculim

The place is well known and there are antique prints that illustrate it. After the 1755 earthquake it was rebuilt, but at that time there was no protected heritage, but the imperative to quickly house people and continue life.

The Palace was transformed in 1858 into an iron warehouse and, later, into an office of the cement company of Leiria.

Even before the 1755 earthquake, there were struggles, wars and invasions that made much of Lisbon an amalgamation of buildings, one on top of the other.

The Phoenicians lived here

We all know that in Lisbon, whenever there are works that require lifting the floor, it is very likely that we will find a medieval pier, a cemetery that there was no report and remains of the daily life of Romans, Muslims, Christians, Phoenicians, Hebrews and Carthaginians.

The Lusitanos were not enough for these avalanches.

Finally we find traces of the Phoenician Civilization

We already knew that the Phoenicians had walked the coast of Portugal and not only in Lisbon, as Alcácer do Sal, Santarém and Castro Marim also have proof of this. We had found traces of the Phoenician civilization, but we thought they came here only to trade and had not settled and accultured.

The Phoenician civilization, one of the oldest, had its territory in present-day Tunisia, Syria, Lebanon, northern Israel and the entire Mediterranean between 1.500 BC and 300 BC

Finally we found proof, a stele of the Phoenicians, written in Phoenician alphabet, the oldest found in Western Europe.

Civilization Phenicia, the legacy of the writing of the Phoenicians
Civilization Phenicia, the legacy of the writing of the Phoenicians

The text on the Phoenician stele

There are three lines of text, one of them fragmented, but it leaves no doubt to archaeologists and experts. It is a funerary dedication in Phoenician, with probable reference to indigenous names, dating from the XNUMXth century BC

Whoever wrote on the tombstone, intended for others to see and read it and that is why it is believed that the locals were acculturated with the Phoenicians.

A Museum Hotel in the old Palace

Excavated the place for almost two years and rescued some gems, the owner of the Hotel, sensitive to this heritage, integrated it in the project and made it visitable. A kind of 5-star Museum, such as the Lisbon Eurostars Museum.

Roman vestiges side by side with these oldest of the Phoenicians and the most recent Moors.

Roman ruins covered by the 1755 earthquake
Roman ruins covered by the 1755 earthquake

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