Três Reinos («The Rock of Three Kingdoms»)
In the middle ages in northern Portugal there was a tripoint between the
medieval kingdoms of Galiza (Galicia), León and Portugal. Nowadays, in
the same (tri)point there is the Spanish Autonomous Region of Galicia at
west, the Spanish Autonomous Region of Castilla-León at east, and the
Portuguese Republic at south.
The curiosity is that the tripoint still has the same old medieval name:
Penedo dos Três Reinos (i.e."Rock of the Three Kingdoms"). The
name is no longer "true", because Portugal is a Republic since
1910 and the other two are now regions of the Kingdom of Spain.
I'm attaching a map, adapted from
a map of Portugal issued by RV Reise- und Verkehrsverlag GmbH; scale
I'm including a photo of the border of France, Portugal. Ok, it's half a
joke. França is a village in Northern Portugal, in the district of Bragança,
former province of Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro. «França» is also the
Portuguese name for France (the country).
Another part that is not a joke is that some malevolent people profited
from the coincidence of names. In the 60's of the XXth century many
Portuguese immigrated illegally to work in France. Some poor, illiterate
people paid lots of money to dealers (kind of mafia) who were supposed to
take those persons to France. After a not very long trip many were left at
this village of França. They couldn't complain. The poor people got what
they had paid for: to be taken to França ("France"). So, in the
60's this entrance of França (village) was a kind of substitute border of
the dreamed France (country).
By the way, the village is only 5 km from the real PTES border, on the
road between Bragança (PT) and Puebla de Sanabria (ES).
Text by Francisco Santos.
This page was last time updated 27/10/11 .