Chapter 10 A Liberal Garden: The Estrela Garden and the Meaning of Being Public

In: Science, Technology and Medicine in the Making of Lisbon (1840–1940)
Ana Duarte Rodrigues
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Ana Simões
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Exploring the potential of urban history of science, this article focuses on the creation of the Estrela garden as part and parcel of the urban renewal undertaken by the Liberal regime in the second half of the nineteenth century. The evidence of the singularity of the Estrela garden is grounded on the “follow the money” recent historiographical trend, and specifically on a thorough analysis of minutes and city council reports. As the first public garden built by the Liberal regime in Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, it is claimed that the Estrela garden embodied clear political and social claims while acting as an urban Liberal laboratory. Anchored on techno-scientific expertise, it became a privileged place to test the most progressive ideas of urbanity, covering common recreational and hygienic issues, and not so typical ones in a garden’s context, associated with the establishment of the first kindergarten in the country.

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