Page:EB1911 - Volume 22.djvu/151

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AGRICULTURE: COMMERCE]
137
PORTUGAL


railways meet the Spanish at Valenga do Minho on the northern frontier, at Barca d'Alva, at Villar Formoso, near Valencia de Alcantara, and near Badajoz on the eastern frontier. In some of the chief towns there are electric tramways. The most important internal waterways are the lower Tagus and the Douro between Oporto and the Paiz do Vinho. In 1908, 11,045 vessels of 19,354,967 tons entered Portuguese seaports, but a very large-majority of these ships were foreign, and especially British. The postal and telegraphic services are adequate; telephone systems are installed in Lisbon, Oporto and other large towns; and the Eastern Telegraph Co. has an important cable station at Carcavellos near Lisbon (q.1:.).

Land Tenure.—Four modes of land tenure are common in Portugal. The poor and thinly-peopled region of Alemtejo is divided into large estates, and cultivated by tenant farmers. Numerous estates in various provinces are held on the metayage system (q.v.). In the north, where the land is much subdivided, peasant proprietorship and a kind of emphyteusis (see Roman Law) are the most usual tenures. The Portuguese form of emphyteusis is called afaramenlo; the landlord parts with the user of his property in exchange for a quit-rent (fora or canon). He may evict his tenant Should the rent be in arrear for five years, and may at any time distrain if it be overdue; but he cannot otherwise interfere with the holding. which the tenant may improve or neglect. Should the tenant scll or exchange his interest in the property, the right of pre-emption is vested in the landlord, and a corresponding right is enjoyed by the tenant should the quitrent be for sale. As this tenure is very ancient, though modified in 1832 and 1867. the value of such holdings has been greatly enhanced with the improvement of the land and the decline in the purchasing power of currency.

Agriculture.—Many of the instruments and processes of Portuguese agriculture and viticulture were introduced by the Romans. and are such as Columella described in the first century A.D. The characteristic spring less ox-cart which is used for heavy loads may be seen represented on Roman frescoes of even earlier date. One form of plough still used consists of a crooked bough, with an iron share attached. Oxen are employed for all field-work: those of the commonest breed are tawny. of great muscular power, very docile, and with horn's measuring 5 or 6 ft. from tip to tip. The ox-yokes are often elaborately carved in a traditional pattern in which Gothic and Moorish designs are blended. The Moors introduced many improvements, especially in the system of irrigation: the characteristic Portuguese wells with their perpetual chains or buckets are of Moorish invention, and retain their Moorish name of noras. In all, rather more than 45 % of the country is uncultivated, chiefly in Alemtejo, Traz-os-Montes and the Serra da Estrella. The principal grain-cro s are maize, wheat and rye; rice is grown among the marshes ofp the coast. Gourds, pumpkins, cabbages and other vegetables are cultivated among the cereals. The large onions sold in Grcat Britain as Spanish are extensively produced in the northern provinces. Every district has its vineyards, the finest of which are in the Paiz do Vinho (see OPORTO and WINE). The bush vines of this region are more exposed to the attacks of Oidium Tuckeri, which invaded the country in 1851, and of Phyllaxera vaxtatrix, which followed in 1863, than the more deeply-rooted vines trained on trellises or trees. Both these pests have been successfully combated. largely by the use of sulphur and by grafting immune American vines upon native stocks. In addition to grapes the commoner fmits include quinces, apples, pears, cherries, limes, lemons and lo9uats (Port. nesfras); Con eixa is famous for oranges, Amarante or peaches, E vas for plums, the southern provinces for carobs and figs. Large quantities of olive oil are manufactured south of the Douro. Almost all cattle, except fighting-bulls, are stall-fed. The fighting-bulls are chiefly reared in the marshes and alluvial valleys; the are bred for strengt and swiftness rather than size, and a good specimen should be sufflcientl agile to leap over the in'ner barrier of the arena (about 68 in. hi h). Large herds of swine are fed in the oak and chestnut woods of Alemteio; sheep and goats are reared in the mountains, where excellent cheeses are made from goats' milk.

Fisheries.—About 50,000 Portuguese are classed as hunters and fishermen. The majority of these are employed in the sardine and tunny fisheries. This industry is carried on in a fleet of more than 10,000 small vessels, including the whalers of the Azores and the cod-boats which operate outside Portuguese waters. The fishermen and fisher women form a quite distinct class of the people; both sexes are noted for their bodily strength, and the men for their bold and skilful seamanship. Tunny and sardines are cured and exported in large quantities, oysters are also exported, and many other sea fish, such as hake, sea-bream, whiting, conger and various fiat-fish are consumed in the country. In the early years of the 20th century the competition of foreign steam trawlers inflicted much hardship on the fishermen. The average yearly value of the fish landed in Portugal (exclusive of cured fish from foreign countries) is about £800, o0o. Salmon. lamfreys and eels are caught in some of the larger rivers; trout aboun in the streams of the northern provinces; but many fresh-water fish common elsewhere in Europe, including pike, perch, tench and chub, are not found.

Mines.—It is usually stated that Portugal is rich in minerals, especially copper, but that want of capital and, especially in the south, of transport and labour, has retarded their exploitation. The mineral deposits of the country are very varied, but their extent is probably exaggerated. The average yearly output from 1901 to 1905 was worth less than £300,000. Copper is mined in southern Portugal. Common salt (chiefly from Alcacer do Sal near Setubal), gypsum, lime and marble are exported; marble and granite of fine quality abound in the southern provinces. Iron is obtained near Beja and Evora, tin in the district of Braganza. Lead, wolfram, antimony and auriferous quartz exist in the districts of Coimbra, Evora, Beja and Faro. Lignite occurs at many points around Coimbra, Leiria and Santarem; asphalt abounds near Alcobaca; phosphorite, asbestos and sulphur are common south of the Tagus. Petroleum has been found near Torres Vedras; pitchblende, arsenic, anthracite and zinc are also mined. Gold was washed from some of the Portuguese rivers before the Christian era, and among the Romans the auriferous sands of the Tagus were proverbially famous; it is, however, extremely improbable that large quantities of gold were ever obtained in this region, although small deposits of alluvial gold may still be found in the valleys of the Tagus and Mondego.

Manufactures.—The Methuen Treaty of 1703 prevented 'the establishment of some manufacturing industries in Portugal by securing a monopoly for British textiles, and it was only after 1892 that Portuguese cotton-spinning and weaving were fostered by heavy protective duties. In zo years these industries became the most important in the country after agriculture, the wine and cork trades and the fisheries. In connexion with the wine trade there are many large cooper ages; cork products are extensively manufactured for ex rt. Lisbon is the headquarters of the ship-building trade. fire, and in other cities, tanning, distilling, various metallurgical industries, and manufactures of soap, Hour. tobacco, &c., are carried on; the entire output is sold in Portugal or its colonies. There is a steady trade in natural mineral waters, which occur in many parts of continental Portugal and the Azores. From the 16th century to the:Sth many artistic handicrafts were practised by the Portuguese in imitation of the fine pottery, cabinetwork, embroideries, &c., which they imported from India and Persia. Portuguese cabinet-work deteriorated in the I9th century; the glass works and potteries of the Aveiro and Leiria districts have lost much of their ancient reputation; and even the exquisite lace of Peniche and Vianna do Castello is strangely neglected abroad. The finest Caldas da Rainha china-ware, with its fantastic representations of birds, beasts and fishes, still commands a fair price in foreign markets; but the blue and white ware originally copied from Delft and later modified under the influence of Persian pottery is now only manufactured in small quantities, of inferior quality. Skilful copies of Moorish metal-work may be purchased in the goldsmiths and silversmiths' shops of Lisbon and Oporto; conspicuous among these are the filigree omaments which are bought by the peasant women as investments and by foreign visitors as curiosities. In 1900 the total industrial population of Portugal was 455,296. Commerce.-The annual value of the foreign trade of Portugal amounts approximately to £l9,000,000. The following 'table shows the value for five years of the exports, and of all imports not reexported (exclusive of coin and bullion):-

Years. Exports. lmports.

1901, £6,284,800 {1:.>,849,622

1902, £6,318,888 £12,354.800

1903 £6,800,7lO £13,068,000

1904 £6.824,692 £1 3,801,622

1905 £6.460 000 £1 3,486,666

In 1910 the principal exports, in order of value, were wine tchiefiy port, common wines and Madeira), raw and manufactured cork, preserved fish, fruits and vegetables, cottons and yarn, copper ore, timber, olive oil, skins, gra.in and flour, tobacco and wool. The imports were raw and manufactured cotton, wool and silk, wheat and maize, coal, iron and machinery, dried codfish, sugar, rice, hides and skins, oils. The United Kingdom, which annually purchases wine to the value of about £900,000 and cork to the value of about, {5o0, o0o, is the chief consumer of Portuguese goods. and the chief exporter to Portugal. Germany and the United States rank respectively second and third among the countries which export to Portugal; S ain, which buys bullocks and pigs, Brazil, which buys wine, and) the Portuguese colonies, which buy textiles. are among the chief purchasers of Portuguese products. In addition to its direct foreign commerce Portugal derives much benefit from its share in the trade between South America and Europe. Large liners from Live ool, Southampton, London, Hamburg, Havre and Antwerp callin regularly for passengers or cargo at Leixoes or Lisbon, or both rts, on their way to and from South America. (es pecially Brazil? In Connexion with this trade an important tourist traffic, chiefly from Great Britain and Germany, was developed towards the end of the 19th century.

Banks and Money.-In 1910 the Bank of Portugal, to which the