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Palácio da Ajuda
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Sintra Nacional Palace

 fsdPalácio da Ajuda


Located in Largo da Ajuda in the center of Lisbon.



Palácio da Ajuda is a neo-classic building that came from King´s D.João VI idea of building one of the most beautiful and classic gentleman´s palaces in Portugal.

 At first, the project was handed over to the architect Manuel Caetano de Sousa, that later was deceased. The project was then delivered to José da Costa e Silva and Francisco Fabri, but at the end the main architect was Antonio Franscisco Rosa due to the death of Fabri and the departure of Costa e Silva to Brazil. The construction began in 1802 but it was halted until 1809. Due to the french Invasions and the departure of the Royal family to Brazil, the works were put off. When D. João VI returned from Brazil in 1821, the works in the palace were still very delay; forcing him to live in Palácio de Queluz. It was only after the King´s  death in 1826 that there was the possibility for the Court of D. Isabel Maria to establish in the Palace.

The Queen D.Carlota and her son D. Miguel – that later was King- also lived in the Palace in spite of all the mediocrity. In 1862 D. Luís went to live in the Palace with his wife, the Queen D. Maria Pia de Sabóia, which was responsable for the Palace´s decoration.

The once empty and hostile Palace became a museum for its pieces rarity and for the elegance in general. The Queen put some artistic rarities in the Palace and worked there during her husband’s reign until the proclamation of the Republic. It is the Queen’s fault that today Portugal has one of the most remarkable Palaces in Europe. The Palace is a imposing one with magnificent arcades, allegorical statues and images in the ceiling.

In the ground floor we can find  the Ajuda Library, one of the most remarkable in Lisbon due to its contents.

 This library was founded by Marquês do Pombal to replace the vanished one in the fire of Paço da Ribeira. It was later on enriched with the colection’s works of the jesuits and holds up to 24.000 copies. Nowadays, the Palace houses the Ministry of cultural Affairs.  

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