Monuments & Buildings

Forte do Rato

The site of Forte do Rato is now inland and close to the Vila Galé Albacora.
It was ordered to build from scratch in the reign of D. Sebastião in order to protect the entrance of the bar and, simultaneously, the city of Tavira. This construction did not prove to be of great use since, even during its construction, there were changes in the coastline and, consequently, at the entrance of the bar, which moves progressively to Levante, removing defensive efficiency to that infrastructure. It has a rammed polygonal plant, inside the square is distinguished the quartering space, the pail and a well. After the Restoration, the fort is rebuilt and is named, from then on, as St. Anthony’s Fort. However, and according to the opinion of engineer Pedro de Santa Colomba, this fortification would not be enough to protect the city from a possible invasion, and therefore the castle of the city was reinforced. In 1656, with a new alteration of the bar, the fort of São João de Cabanas was built, the fort of Santo António being reduced to registration along with a small battery on the opposite bank of gilão. In a ratio of armaments of 1792, the state of the fort is reported, supplied by only nine men and two pieces, one of which without paraphernalia, serving only as a deposit of gunpowder. In 1821, the structure is without artillery and with the door half-undone, and the gunpowder accumulates in a despicable pail and with the rotten lining. This state of abandonment to which the fort was voted, affects not only the defensive structures but also the lodgings, being the garrison of three men surrendered daily by boat. In 1830 it is deactivated as a warehouse and definitively abandoned by order of brigadier Governor of the Algarve, Viscount of Molellos, who considers it too expensive to maintain or connect by land.

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