History of Triumphal Arch of Rua Augusta
Majestic and monumental, Rua Augusta's Arch is the symbol of triumphant Lisboa, reborn from the ashes of the 1775 Earthquake. The city that emerged is the one we know today, that captivates all who wander through the Baixa downtown district with its wide avenues facing the riverfront.
Situated in the north wing of Terreiro do Paço, this Neoclassical Arch marks the horizon of this historic area of the city. Crowning Rua Augusta in white, it is the gateway to this prime avenue bustling with activity, which today can be seen from up high in the Arch's gazebo, accessible by lift.
Here a breathtaking 360º panoramic view over the city awaits us. The Tagus, Lisboa's Sé Cathedral and Castle, Rossio and the ruins of Carmo Convent, are just some of the city's monuments of which the Arch's gazebo commands unique views. And boasting the same splendor of a bygone era, at the top of the Arch you can see the sculptures of Célestin Anatole Calmels representing Glory crowning Genius and Valour.
In the lower level, there are sculptures by Vítor Bastos, representing the historic personalities of Nuno Alvares Pereira, Viriato, Vasco da Gama and the Marquis of Pombal.
But it is inside that you will find the tales of this triumphal arch and its role in Lisboa's history, from the start of its construction in 1775 until its completion in 1875, with an exhibition in the "Sala do Relogio".
But the biggest history lesson we can learn from this triumphal Arch is clearly visible in the inscription, in Latin, on its pediment: "The Virtues of the Greatest, that they may be a lesson to all, mark for eternity the grandeur of the Portuguese soul and its achievements throughout the ages".
Lisbon is often considered the "White City". This nickname is due largely to the use of White Limestone Lioz Stone that is used in its main monuments, as exemplified by The Arc of Augusta Street.
(From do "Turismo de Lisboa")