and many other books about PORTUGAL's capital
the most successfull and talented
historian of LISBON.
Here is the first attempt to
tell you our stories
in English.

quarta-feira, 22 de junho de 2022



«The fado was born one day/ When hardly a breeze was whispering/ And the sea merged into the sky/ In the tacking of a sailing ship/ In the breast of a sailor-boy/ Who was singing in his melancholy» – so goes the poem written by José Régio and sung by Amália Rodrigues. 

The real origins of Lisbon’s traditional song are probably much more recent than the era of the Discoveries. There is no written record of the fado before the 19th century. Its melody, which is thought to be the successor of the «lundum» danced by black slaves in Brazil, follows a four-line stanza where each line has a 10-syllable count. But aboveall, it reflects a state of spirit, sad and nostalgic, that Lisbon has made its own. 

During the 19th century, the fado (the song about fate) was sung all over Lisbon, from Calçada de Carriche to the flat-bottomed boats of the River Tagus, through the taverns of Bairro Alto and the narrow streets of Mouraria. The poignant plucking of guitars was heard in Arco do Cego and in Madre de Deus, in Lumiar and in Laranjeiras, in the Quebra-Bilhas tavern and in the bullring at Campo de Santana. The fado was sung in markets, brothels and palaces.

(continued on the book Lisbon for the Cultivated Tourist,

by Marina Tavares Dias)

domingo, 12 de junho de 2022

Queen Stephanie of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen Bragança

 The favourite chapter by the author LOST LISBON is on the 7th volume of this gigantic work. Marina Tavares Dias dedicated a dense research, for more than 15 years, to the study of all documents related to Queen Stephanie of Portugal , always bearing in mind how different she was from all the other queens, from any time or country. Queen Stephanie, Princess of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen was the first royal to decide to build a hospital exclusively dedicated to poor children. It still exists in Lisbon, and its park is a beautiful place to visit and rest.

We hope to see the publishing QUEEN STEPHANIE's biography , as announced more than 20 years ago . This vast work will cast light on the established historical lies about Estefania / 
Stephanie of Hohenzollern - Sigmaringen. Lies not only about the Queen herself but also about the people who, in the later 1800s, started the urban myths that led to these incredible lies.

Meanwhile, Queen Stephanie is the theme of these beautiful works at:

sábado, 11 de junho de 2022


Marina Tavares Dias


Eça de Queiroz, the most famous Portuguese novelist of the late 1800s, was part of a literary group with the provocative title os «Life's Losers» or «Losers of Life». They reunited during long evenings of delicious conversation and even more delicious suppers at Lisbon's best restaurants of the time. 

Here is a very raare photograph of «The Losers of Life» (with the exception of António Cândido) photographed by Augusto Bobone in 1889, in the garden of the house of the Count of Arnoso, on Rua de S. Domingos à Lapa: Marquês de Soveral (Luiz Pinto de Soveral, 1850-1922), Carlos Lima Mayer (1846-1910), Count of Sabugosa (António José de Mello Cezar de Menezes, 1854-1923), Oliveira Martins (1846-1894), Carlos Lobo d'Ávila (1860-1895), Eça (1845-1900) ), Ramalho Ortigão (1836-1915), Guerra Junqueiro (1850-1923), Count of Arnoso (Bernardo Pinheiro Correia de Mello, 1855-1911) and Count of Ficalho (Francisco Manoel de Mello Breyner, 1837-1903).

«Paris made the Revolution, London gave us Shakespeare, Vienna gave Mozart, Berlin gave Kant, Lisbon... has given US – what the hell!»
- Eça de Queiroz in a letter to Ramalho Ortigão, July 20, 1873.
Follow them. In the book or here:

Several original pieces, with original phtograph/albumen, in high resolution,
of «The Life's Losers», 1889. On sale at:

quinta-feira, 9 de junho de 2022

3 Patron Saints?


“Many people think of St. Anthony as being the patron saint of Lisbon, but actually he’s not. The patron saint is St. Vincent, but he’s not alone in his mission. Let’s not forget St. George, whose name was given to the city’s castle by King João I. During the Reconquista, the Portuguese Christians distinguished themselves from the Castilians by cheering for St. George (while the Castilians cheered for St. James of Compostela). So there are sort of three «patron» saints of Lisbon: St. George, St. Vincent and St. Anthony, the most cherished of all”.

Marina Tavares Dias
Lisboa Misteriosa

sexta-feira, 25 de fevereiro de 2022


Books and quotes
by Lisbon's main historian:

« [...] Although Black Horse Square has been called Praça do Comércio ever since the 18th century, there are only a handful of Lisbon residents who do not know it by its former name, Terreiro do Paço, meaning the Palace Grounds. Before the great earthquake which destroyed Lisbon on the morning of November 1st, 1755, it was on this wide space of beaten earth (terreiro) that the royal palace (paço) was situated. 

The chronicles inform us that some of the most valuable artistic treasures of Europe were to be found inside the palace. However, nothing was saved in the aftermath of the earthquake when the tsunami and the fire completed the damage. Under the orders of the Marquis of Pombal, Terreiro do Paço was rebuilt from 1758 onwards. Today it symbolises the post-earthquake era of downtown Lisbon, known as the Baixa. Shortly after being baptized with its new name, Praça do Comércio, it was given Lisbon's first statue of a king riding a horse (D. José I by the sculptor Machado de Castro).»

Marina Tavares Dias

sexta-feira, 24 de dezembro de 2021

Own part of our Magic Lisbon

The most comprehensive personal archives about Lisbon, Portugal, History (original negatives, photographs and thousands of objects) now give you a chance to own a piece of their fascination. Here are the first designs and artworks, via Redbubble, from the Arquivo Marina Tavares Dias. Enjoy. Thanks for your help building an archive open to the general public.

The Marquis of Pombal


“Tribute is paid to the #Marquis of Pombal in an area of #Lisbon, Rotunda, that should pay homage to the establishment of the Republic (in 1910) because it was there that the Republican barricades were set up. At the time of the Marquis, the area wasn’t even Lisbon, it was part of the Northern suburbs. The homage to the marquis should be in the city centre, the downtown, which he rebuilt after the 1755 earthquake.”

Marina Tavares Dias
interviewed 2020