11 Facts About Portugal

1. Out of the summer season, Portugal has a large number of festivals, designed more to an urban audience, like Flowfest or Hip Hop Porto.

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2. In the classical music domain, Portugal is represented by names as the pianists Artur Pizarro, Maria Joao Pires, Sequeira Costa, the violinists Carlos Damas, Gerardo Ribeiro and in the past by the great cellist Guilhermina Suggia.

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3. In 2007, Portugal had 10,617,575 inhabitants of whom about 332,137 were legal immigrants.

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4. One of the oldest learned societies of Portugal is the Sciences Academy of Lisbon, founded in 1779.

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5. The national currency of Portugal is the euro, which replaced the Portuguese Escudo, and the country was one of the original member states of the eurozone.

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6. In the 20th century, Portugal engaged in two major conflicts: World War I and the Portuguese Colonial War.

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7. On 31 May 2010, Portugal became the sixth country in Europe and the eighth country in the world to legally recognize same-sex marriage on the national level.

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8. On 26 March 1995, Portugal started to implement Schengen Area rules, eliminating border controls with other Schengen members while simultaneously strengthening border controls with non-member states.

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9. With the occupation by Napoleon, Portugal began a slow but inexorable decline that lasted until the 20th century.

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10. At this time, Portugal covered about half of its present area.

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11. The main cities of the period in Portugal were Beja, Silves, Alcacer do Sal, Santarem and Lisbon.

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