Algarve History 101

Peter and Lynne Booker

Episode 6 / Peter Booker

Peter Booker was a Foundation Exhibitioner at Pembroke College, Cambridge, where he obtained his degree in Modern History and he also has an MBA from the Open University. He took a break from history with his 30 year career as a Human Resource Manager with the National Coal Board, latterly British Coal. Peter has given over 100 lectures, regularly in Tavira, Lagoa and São Brás and occasionally in Elvas, Lisbon, Porto, Hedingham Castle and the Cavalry and Guards Club in London.

Nick sat down with him in his home near Tavira and had a short chat about the history of the Algarve. Please excuse some minor sound issues.

Show notes

  • Why the Phoenicians landed in Tavira.
  • Tavira’s rich history.
  • Carthaginians and their conflict with the Romans.
  • Balsa, the Roman occupation of the Algarve and piracy.
  • Examples of Roman civilization in the Algarve.
  • Garum! The fish paste industry in Roman Times
  • Suebians, Visigoths and the Moors.
  • 700 AD – 1249 AD Moorish rule, constructing the towns of Silves, Loulé and Tavira.
  • Al Gharb and how the Algarve got it’s name.
  • 1249 AD: The nation of Portugal and the expulsion of the Muslims.
  • 1385 – 1521:The attempts to conquer Marocco.
  • Henry the Navigator
  • The difficulties of reaching the Algarve and the 1884 railway line.
  • Marques do Pombal and the 1755 earthquake

About the Algarve History Association

From the Algarve History Association’s website: The Algarve History Association aims to promote interest in Portuguese culture and history using the English language as the main medium but with an increasing number of articles in Portuguese. The organisation is non-profit making and undertaken on a voluntary basis. The Association charges no membership fee, and there is no charge to attend presentations unless there is a need to cover expenses of visiting lecturers. We ask that you leave your email address so that we may keep you personally informed of events.

There are regular talks and presentations and an increasing number of cultural events. The outline programmes of event can be found using the link below. For more detailed information see the sections on ‘Forthcoming Presentations’ and ‘Forthcoming Events’. Any member of the public with an interest and an ability to present their specialist cultural or historical knowledge may contact us to participate in the annual programme, which runs from September to June inclusive.

Relevant links

The Algarve History Association is a treasure trove of fascinating articles about our history down here


  1. A “promoter” of Portuguese History and Culture?!
    You wanted to say that they(the bookers) are Liars That (Pretend to know…) DON’T KNOW A BIT OF PORTUGAL , and that, what they really Promote, is the Hate and cynicism Towards Portugal Great Nation and Our History and Culture(The REal Ones!), don’t you?…
    So much LIES and also IGNORANCE about Portugal History that is almost impossible to talk about it all.
    ONce, Portugal had a Lot of Muslim Pirates and Invaders(attackers) along Algarve’s Coast and towns, but Nowadays WE have a lot of the worst Invaders, those that come as “friends”, install themselves in Our Land , don’t even Speak(or try to) Portuguese and talk about Algarve(and Portugal) as IF Algarve is another british “colony” and Portuguese People WEREN’T Living In THEIR OWN LAND!!!
    But, PORTUGUESE , No Traitors nor Ignorant, WE Know what you are up to, LIARS and Ungratefull Invaders of Algarve.
    Unfortunately, WE , Portuguese, Are no more The Sovereigns of Our Own Land..only apparently WE are the Rulers of Portugal… it’s only an Illusion…
    But, don’t worry. Very SOON WE Will Take Back Our Sovereignty!
    And THINGS Will Be Put in Their Correct and Rightful Places!
    For starters, PORTUGUESE Language Will Be The Main Language, and whoever(foreign people) wish to LIVE Here, will have to Learn IT very well, and ALWAYS Talk Publicly Portuguese, and NOT their old motherland language… i say old because IF THEY REALLY WANT TO LIVE PERMANENTLY HERE, they will have to Nationalize themselves as Portuguese and Adopt Portuguese Rules, Culture and Everything Else that IS Portuguese.
    Of course they will and can preserve their former culture and language within their own homes, but that’s it. And, before they will be Accepted as Portuguese, they will have to spend at least one year being monthly examined by Portuguese State Appointed Examiners, that will approve monthly(so that at the end of the year, there must be a a ratio of 70% of Approvals between the 12 months) or not , their Knowledge and Adaptation as to BE A Portuguese. Of course, I could go on with these Future events but that’s enough.You already have here an hint of what will happen…
    And of course, “democracy”, “Particracy”, “republic”, “free”masonry, and all the other forms of “liberal” Tyranny over the Nations that are still used today, WILL BE Expelled from Portugal.
    The ONLY “party” that will exist Here, IT Will Be Portugal, The Nation!
    And of Course, Christ Is and Will Always Be Our Supreme King!

    ps.: And, by the way, where is THe PORTUGUSE version of this invader site?!

    • Hey Rogério! Thanks for your viewpoint. Apologies but this site isn’t about Portuguese sovereignty, it’s designed to help English people enjoy your beautiful land and contribute to your local economy.

      Thanks for your point of view.

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