José Saramago / The Work / Bibliography

History of the Siege of Lisbon

History of the Siege of Lisbon

When the Crusaders helped take Lisbon, Raimundo Silva remembers saying no. I think it's always necessary to introduce this no, because yes is the routine, yes is the custom, yes is yes




History of the Siege of Lisbon

2014: 2019 (1st edition at Porto Editora; 11th edition)


The calligraphy on the cover is by the architect Álvaro Siza Vieira

«It has been a long time since Raimundo Silva entered the castle. He decided to go there. The author tells the story of a narrator who tells a story, between real and imaginary, past and present, yes and no. In an old building in the Castelo neighborhood, the fight between the angelic champion and the demonic champion. Raimundo Silva wants to see the city. The roofs. The Triumphal Arch of Rua Augusta, the ruins of Carmo. Climb the wall on the side of São Vicente. Look at Campo de Santa Clara. There D. Afonso Henriques and his soldiers settled. Raimundo Silva “knows why the Crusaders refused to help the Portuguese to surround and take over the city, and he is going back home to write the History of the Siege of Lisbon. A work in which a Lisbon reviewer introduces the word “no” in a 12th century text about the conquest of Lisbon from the Moors by the Crusaders.”
(Diário de Notícias, October 9, 1998)