These tiles are located on the facade of a very, very old building in the lovely town of Ovar. To my dismay, many old buildings have fallen in disrepair and this is an attempt to preserve a little of the patrimony of Portugal before it's too late. The center tiles are from a home in Mafra.
Ovar was founded in 1251! Surrounded by lagoons and saltpans, Ovar is conveniently located between the northern cities of Porto and Aveiro.
It is an unusual town where some of the women still wear black pork-pie hats and walk around the streets barefoot. Many of the local inhabitants are descendants of Phoenician sailors who settled around these shores because they were attracted by the purity of the sky and the excellent fishing to be had. (see photo of actual Facade)
These amazing Earrings are 3" long and GORGEOUS!!! The top tile POSTS are replicas from Evora church of Mercy. Czech glass beads. The bottom pendants are reversible! Very lightweight.
According to Wikipedia:
In 1717, King John V began construction of the Mafra Palace, Mafra was barely a few hamlets that huddled around the monument. The era was also marked by the construction of a garden (Portuguese: Jardim do Cerco) and the establishment of the royal hunting park (Portuguese: Tapada de Mafra); building projects continued throughout the reigns of Kings Joseph I (the construction and completion of the Mafra Palace), John VI (the interiors of the Palace) and Ferdinand (the redesign of the Jardim do Cerco). Yet, William Beckford, writing in August 1787, noted that Mafra was of little interest, and nothing more than a few rooftops nestled in mountains.
During the 19th century, the population began to grow around the palace, but this remained generally a rural community (a aspect that would continue until the 20th century). José Mangens in 1936 echoed similar indications of Mafra in writing about old Rua dos Arcipestres, noting: "...Mafra offers nothing interesting and looks more like a hinterland village with its huts and ruined portals typical backyard, shielded with old cans...".
As Guilherme José Ferreira de Assunção later wrote, after a few visits, Queen Maria realized the advantages of establishing a military contingent in the Convent of Mafra, which she initiated. This change transformed the region and its people, who lived in a precarious conditions of existence. After 1840, the Convent was occupied by the army. By 1859, 4000 troops would enlist in the official military boot-camp (Portuguese: Depósito Geral de Recrutas), established by King Pedro V. Unfortunately, the institution was abolished in the following year, when 94 recruits died from an infectious disease. But, from 1848–1859 and 1870–1873, the convent continued to house the Royal Military College (Portuguese: Real Colégio Militar).
In 1887 the Infantry and Cavalry School (Portuguese: Escola Prática de Infantaria e Cavalaria) and, a year later, in Tapada, a firing range was established, that was later frequented by King Carlos, an enthusiast of shooting.
During the French invasion of Portugal in 1807, Napoleon made the Mafra Palace became headquarters and garrison. Part of the army headed for Peniche and Torres Vedras under orders from General Luison, the remaining forces garrisoned in the Palace and Convent, while the executive staff requisitioned homes in the village. This lasted nine months, until 2 September 1807, when British forces were able to extricate the French from their positions. Meanwhile, Portuguese engineers, allied to British forces constructed a system of fortresses north of Lisbon, to secure the defence of the capital and expel the French. The Lines of Torres Vedres, as they were known, passed through the municipality of Mafra, and were constructed after 1809. Of the 156 fortresses, 48 were located within this municipality, and represented the second line of defence including sites in Malveira, Gradil, Ribamar, Carvoeira, Mafra and Ericeira. Only vestiges of these fortes and redoubts remain, unrecognizable or difficult to access. Within the Tapada there were fortes in Sunível, Milhariça, Juncal and Silvério, while a group of forts followed the left bank of the Ribeira de Safarujo to Ribamar. In the south, the last line of defence, should the French breach the defences, were the forts of Carvoeira, São Julião and Zambujal (the last being still recognizable, although partially covered in vegetation).
On 5 October 1910, the Mafra Palace was also the scene for an episode of the Republican Revolution that occurred in Lisbon. King Manuel II fleeing from the coup in Lisbon, took refuge and over-nighted in the Palace of Mafra. The next day they abandoned the palace, by car, travelling with his mother and grandmother to the shores of Ericeira, where the royal yacht D. Amélia would take them onto Gibraltar and exile. Later that month, on 20 October, a group of monarchists gathered in the Largo D. João V with arms, where they walked to the Infantry School (Portuguese: Escola Prática de Infantaria), installing themselves in the convent, cutting the telephone wires and telegraph cables. The revolt was easily put down by the military, but resulted in a collection of hundreds of people in the local jails.
In 1911, in the Depósito de Remonta e Garanhões which was later replaced by the Military Equestrian School (Portuguese: Escola Militar de Equitação) in 1950 and, seven years later, the Military Centre for Physical Education, Equestriansim and Sport (Portuguese: Centro Militar de Educação Física, Equitação e Desportos). Today, it continues to function as the Military Centre for Physical Education and Sport (Portuguese: Centro Militar de Educação Física e Desportos), since 1993, in the Largo General Conde Januário and the Infantry School (Portuguese: Escola Prática de Infantaria), in the Convent of Mafra.
Wear a Piece of History!
All my tiles are replicas made of polymer clay where the image actually becomes part of the clay through baking. No glue is used in the process. The pieces become waterproof and scratch resistant. Due to the handmade and hand shaped nature of each tile, slight variations will occur, as no two pieces are alike.
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