City, go down the drain, 1755

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Located on the right bank of the Tagus River, fifteen miles from the Atlantic Ocean and is buried in the orange groves of Lisbon with its 230000th population in 1755 was considered one of the most beautiful and prosperous trading cities of Europe.

The capital of Portugal grew rich, lived in prosperity of its citizens, who were also devout Catholics. The most beautiful buildings in the city considered the Royal Palace and Opera, but in Lisbon and many temples were erected. Residents proudly admired for the work of their hands and do all the sacred religious ceremonies. There was no more or less significant Christian holiday that does not otmechatsya in Lisbon. They were prepared in advance, and solemnly celebrated lavishly.

So it was this time. On Saturday, November 1, 1755, lissabontsev going to mention one of the traditional Catholic holidays — Halloween. The city streets are festively decorated, people put on their most beautiful dresses. In the morning the city was floating solemn bells, inviting service. All the temples and churches of the Portuguese capital is widely opened their doors. Lisbon residents congratulated each other, smiled, saying nice words. After the service, the faithful had intended to pass the procession through the streets of the Portuguese capital.

Everything was ready for the ceremony to another point, and no signs of impending disaster was not. However, the march did not take place. In 9 hours and 20 minutes, when the service was still going, the city suddenly shaken by aftershocks. It seemed that at one point the earth became a living, began to move under my feet, and pulled to the side of the building. As later told one of the witnesses, the high spiers of the churches' swayed like ears of corn in the wind. " But less than a few seconds after the first jolt, as the earth shook from the second strike. He was much stronger and more palpable: the bell tower fell on the roof of the temple, the walls of houses staggered and fell to the ground, cover it hundreds and thousands of people out into the street.

Aftershocks with epicenters in the Azores-Gibraltar Ridge repeatedly destroyed Lisbon. At this time, an earthquake of a sudden, in the early morning in the beautiful sunny weather. City, though shroud covered the svinpovo huge gray cloud, and he paused as if in a silent scream. Following the second blow followed the third, which started and finished work of destruction. City crumbled like a house of cards.

About an hour after the main shock of the sea receded, exposing the tidal band. Stood at berth ships lay down sideways on muddy bottom. It was a terrible sight — empty port helpless on merchant ships.

Hundreds of people who were at the time of tremors in the temples, were killed by their fragments. The survivors tried to leave the crumbling city, across the river Tagus. Those who managed to escape from the hell Vsesokrushayuschaya, rushed to the shore and harbor quays, hoping to go on the boats at sea and find salvation. At eleven in the morning, more than a hundred people gathered on the bank of the river. Were at this time in the boats told later as a giant wave hid waterfront and people. When the water receded from the massive stone embankment no trace remained. According to eyewitnesses, the bank absorbed the crack in the ground. Specialists believe that the Lisbon quay immersed herself in razmggy sandy soil.

After some time, the water masses raced back and hit the beach. High as a house, a tsunami wave (their height reached seventeen meters) flooded the entire lower city. Heavily laden three-masted ships, like toy boats, were picked up by the waves and thrown in the city for a few kilometers.

Soon wave descended to the main streets of Lisbon and became rapid flow instantly consume all that occurred on their way. The capital of Portugal, who was one of the richest and most beautiful cities in the world — the center of trade, religion, and art — in a matter of minutes turned into a heap of ruins.

Through denunciations from the ground rumble, rumble through rushivshihsya buildings barely heard the cries and groans of the wounded and dying. Burning candle in the remaining temples fell on the floor, in apartment buildings were destroyed hearths and furnaces, sparks erupted from furniture, fabrics, carpets. The fire spread to many buildings in the city, and in different quarters of the fires flared up. All that survived the earthquake and floods, is now perished in the flames.

The great German poet IV Goethe left on the Lisbon earthquake of such records: "The first was in November 1755 Lisbon earthquake, instilling fear into the boundless world, already accustomed to peace and quiet. And the earth is shaking, the sea boils face ships, falling at home, they are breaking down the tower and the church, part of the Royal Palace is absorbed by sea. It seems … that cracked earth spewing flames for the fire and the smoke of exploding debris. Sixty thousand people, the moment before a peaceful and relaxing, are killed in an instant. "

Of the twenty thousand homes, which were then in Lisbon, more or less survived only three thousand. Ironically, in the center part of the city survived the Royal Palace and the opera house, but they were blackened by fire and smoke … All churches and temples, offices and residential premises, which are not destroyed tremors were in flames. Many residents who had hoped to ride out the earthquake in homes, burned alive. About seventy thousand people have found their death under fallen off buildings, water and fire.

Many saw this as God's punishment of the evil one believer then later recalled it: "Big beautiful city, rich in Europe, now turned into a pile of stones. Lord, have mercy on poor country, deliver us from the evil that we deserve for our sins, and that you have Karan! Large wonderful church, magnificent are not in Rome itself, are destroyed. Killing all the monasteries, and from 20 000 individuals remain in the spiritual life, only half. "

According to some seismologists, it was the strongest earthquake history up to that time. From those three powerful underground shocks suffered not only Lisbon. Overall, one-third of Europe felt the tremors. Over a thousand miles from Lisbon to cities rocked spiers of churches, under the feet of walking the floor, the water level (eg in the Swiss lake) unexpectedly rose by one meter, then back down. Tremors caused seiches (standing waves) in some lakes of Norway and Sweden. The strength of the waves in some ports of Holland reached such strength that they are easily torn from the pier moored ships. Luxembourg has failed military barracks in the rubble that killed five hundred soldiers. Even in distant Africa was not without casualties: on recent estimates, about ten thousand people remained under the rubble.

After disaster strikes over Lisbon Yeshe long curly black smoke from the fires. Floated everywhere torn trees, remnants of furniture, household goods, and the bodies of people and animals. The disaster was terrible, and the city had to be rebuilt completely.

Source: Secrets of the Ages

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