Monday, May 27, 2019

Two Gunshots That Changed the World: The Death of King Carlos I of Portugal & The Winchester 1907

It is a timeless conundrum of astrophysics. What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object? On February 1, 1908, at the Praca do Comercio on the bank of the Tagus River in Lisbon, Portugal, the world got an answer to that question. On that fateful day, an immovable centuries-old traditional European monarchy felt the unstoppable power of popular revolution.

The Portuguese King Carlos I was related to just about everybody and by all accounts was a fairly well-intentioned guy. It is difficult to grasp through our modern eyes just how intermarried the royal families of late 19th-century Europe had become. Carlos I, the regent of Portugal, counted cousins from Germany, France, Romania, and England. His mother was Italian. Napoleon Victor Bonaparte was a relation on her side.

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