WI: No Marquis of Pombal

If you don't know, the Marquis of Pombal was a major leader of Portugal in the mid-18th century. He made many reforms that reshaped Portugal, including rebuilding Lisbon following the 1755 Earthquake, banning the Jesuits from Brazil, stopped the Spanish from invading in 1762, ended the slave trade in Portugal itself, weakened the Portuguese Inquistion, strengthened mercantilism as an economic system in Portugal (weakening the nobility and the clergy), defended Absolutism by instituting a system of censorship that banned books written by Rousseau, Voltaire, Diderot etc., but also strengthened protections by removing institutional discrimination against cristãos-novos. All in all, a very important person in Portuguese history. In Brazil, he transfered the capital from Salvador to Rio de Janeiro and banned the enslavement of indigenous peoples, making the African slave trade even bigger on Brazil. So I ask, what if he never existed? What if there was no Marquis of Pombal running Portugal for over 20 years and shaping it? Basically, what would be the impacts of (at least some) of these reforms never happening?
(Also please, can you say what you think would've happened to Brazil ITTL, no Marquis of Pombal would definitely affect it)
@Vinization @Gukpard @AltoRegnant @RedAquilla @Guilherme Loureiro @Lusitania (You're the best people on Lusophone history on this board, that's why I pinged you)
 
If you don't know, the Marquis of Pombal was a major leader of Portugal in the mid-18th century. He made many reforms that reshaped Portugal, including rebuilding Lisbon following the 1755 Earthquake, banning the Jesuits from Brazil, stopped the Spanish from invading in 1762, ended the slave trade in Portugal itself, weakened the Portuguese Inquistion, strengthened mercantilism as an economic system in Portugal (weakening the nobility and the clergy), defended Absolutism by instituting a system of censorship that banned books written by Rousseau, Voltaire, Diderot etc., but also strengthened protections by removing institutional discrimination against cristãos-novos. All in all, a very important person in Portuguese history. In Brazil, he transfered the capital from Salvador to Rio de Janeiro and banned the enslavement of indigenous peoples, making the African slave trade even bigger on Brazil. So I ask, what if he never existed? What if there was no Marquis of Pombal running Portugal for over 20 years and shaping it? Basically, what would be the impacts of (at least some) of these reforms never happening?
(Also please, can you say what you think would've happened to Brazil ITTL, no Marquis of Pombal would definitely affect it)
@Vinization @Gukpard @AltoRegnant @RedAquilla @Guilherme Loureiro @Lusitania (You're the best people on Lusophone history on this board, that's why I pinged you)
The influence of the catholic church in Brazil is going to be stronger and Brazil might turn into something like Argentina where you have a state religion.

From Pombal onwards the history of christianity in brazil is basically a never stop windmill of the government siding against the church over and over again. In this scenario this circle won't start in the same way.
 
I barely know anything about this period, so I'll make only a few guesses, and even they may be wrong. First, Pombal only amassed so much power because the king let him, so if he doesn't exist but José I stays the same he may just appoint someone with a similar mindset. Even so, there may be some substantial differences: for example, the Távora family may not be executed ITTL, or at least not as brutally. Lisbon may also be rebuilt differently, and perhaps even cease to be the Portuguese capital (IIRC there were some proposals to move the seat of power to Coimbra).
 
The influence of the catholic church in Brazil is going to be stronger and Brazil might turn into something like Argentina where you have a state religion.

From Pombal onwards the history of christianity in brazil is basically a never stop windmill of the government siding against the church over and over again. In this scenario this circle won't start in the same way.
Good point, a more fanatically Catholic Brazil could result in religious demographics being very different. Instead of the rise of Protestantism, we would have what has happened in Argentina: the rise of the irreligious (including Atheists), as a backlash to religious fanaticism (followed by a small increase in Protestantism)
 
I barely know anything about this period, so I'll make only a few guesses, and even they may be wrong. First, Pombal only amassed so much power because the king let him, so if he doesn't exist but José I stays the same he may just appoint someone with a similar mindset. Even so, there may be some substantial differences: for example, the Távora family may not be executed ITTL, or at least not as brutally. Lisbon may also be rebuilt differently, and perhaps even cease to be the Portuguese capital (IIRC there were some proposals to move the seat of power to Coimbra).
Thanks, the Portuguese capital being in Coimbra would be quite interesting, with all the government infrastructure and bureaucrats being transferred to that city
 
If you don't know, the Marquis of Pombal was a major leader of Portugal in the mid-18th century. He made many reforms that reshaped Portugal, including rebuilding Lisbon following the 1755 Earthquake, banning the Jesuits from Brazil, stopped the Spanish from invading in 1762, ended the slave trade in Portugal itself, weakened the Portuguese Inquistion, strengthened mercantilism as an economic system in Portugal (weakening the nobility and the clergy), defended Absolutism by instituting a system of censorship that banned books written by Rousseau, Voltaire, Diderot etc., but also strengthened protections by removing institutional discrimination against cristãos-novos. All in all, a very important person in Portuguese history. In Brazil, he transfered the capital from Salvador to Rio de Janeiro and banned the enslavement of indigenous peoples, making the African slave trade even bigger on Brazil. So I ask, what if he never existed? What if there was no Marquis of Pombal running Portugal for over 20 years and shaping it? Basically, what would be the impacts of (at least some) of these reforms never happening?
(Also please, can you say what you think would've happened to Brazil ITTL, no Marquis of Pombal would definitely affect it)
@Vinization @Gukpard @AltoRegnant @RedAquilla @Guilherme Loureiro @Lusitania (You're the best people on Lusophone history on this board, that's why I pinged you)
Short answer, because right now, I'm pressed for time: Brazil as we know it is a product of Pombal's rule, both due to his reforms regarding Brazil, and due to the fact that the people who were the movers-and-shakers of Brazilian Independence were almost all educated in Coimbra, which had been deeply reformed during Pombal's rule. So, unless Pombal's substitute does much of the same things he did(and there wouldn't be any point to such a timeline if he did) Brazil as we know it doesn't exist - may not even be a single country.
 
Short answer, because right now, I'm pressed for time: Brazil as we know it is a product of Pombal's rule, both due to his reforms regarding Brazil, and due to the fact that the people who were the movers-and-shakers of Brazilian Independence were almost all educated in Coimbra, which had been deeply reformed during Pombal's rule. So, unless Pombal's substitute does much of the same things he did(and there wouldn't be any point to such a timeline if he did) Brazil as we know it doesn't exist - may not even be a single country.
Wow, thanks for the reply. I knew he was important, but not that much!
 
Wasn't Brazil close to adopting a Portuguese/Tupi "creole" language as its main language, instead of pure Portuguese, until Pombal took steps to prevent this?
 
Wasn't Brazil close to adopting a Portuguese/Tupi "creole" language as its main language, instead of pure Portuguese, until Pombal took steps to prevent this?
yes it was. Without pombal, the country would have a proto-Portuguese, making it difficult to control Brazil.
 
Lisbon would be rebuilt even if not the capital but I still believe it would remain the capital. It could be built differently but I don’t think it would differ too much from OTL because I think they would give the task to the same architects.

John V’s reign was very much influenced by the church and many somewhat pressured Joseph I to change policies and the new King did not oppose such stance. Opposition to John V’s were the ones promoting Pombal so they would likely promote someone else with a thought similar to his but maybe more moderate, though I know not who. Maybe Luís da Cunha’s other suggestion, Gonçalo Manuel Galvão de Lacerda or Pombal’s first opponent in the Government, Diogo de Mendonça Corte-Real. Though I don’t have much information on either. I think we might see a reign similar to Maria I’s after the Viradeira.

I think it’s more than likely that mercantilism would be promoted, especially when the gold started to wane. Church influence would definitely be reduced in the country when compared with the previous reign and I’m pretty sure the Jesuits would too, after all, there was a campaign against them in many European countries by this time frame.

Slave trade in Metropolitan Portugal would be banned eventually and so would the discrimination against Cristãos-Novos, when, I’m not sure but if the French Revolution happens, then this will be addressed before the second half of the 19th Century.

Pombal did not ban the enslavement of Indians, I know from memory that Sebastian I tried to enforce the ban which likely happen far earlier though I don’t know when exactly. What Pombal could have done was to finally enforce the ban because even if early monarchs banned slavery of Indians, they could not stop the people from current São Paulo from enslaving Indians. Atlantic Slave Trade would remain as it was OTL, Minas Gerais did not use Indian slaves during the gold rush, and they used African slaves. The paulistas only went for Indian slaves because initially, they were too poor to buy African slaves.

As some other replies pointed out, Brazil would likely be more balkanized but I’m skeptical of Portuguese-Tupi creole taking hold of the whole country, especially with how many new arrivals occurred in the 18th Century that no doubt would speak Portuguese. At most, I think certainly regions would use the creole, like São Paulo and then it would depend if Portuguese America achieves independence, how it’s done and when it’s done.

As I said, it would be a far more balkanized Brazil and some regions would definitely feel more attached to Portugal like Grão-Pará and Maranhão in the north and Santa Catarina and the Rio Grande do Sul in the south which could remain as Portuguese possessions but others like Minas Gerais, Pernambuco and São Paulo could seek independence. Then we would have to see the strength of Portugal at the time of the revolts to see if any, part of or all of Brazil could be kept.

Now I’m not an expert in Brazilian but I’m pretty sure the rise of Protestantism in Brazil is tied a lot to the size of the country which prevented full evangelization by Catholics during colonial rule and the Empire which left a vacuum that was filled by those Evangelical Churches we see today during the Republic so I think it could be averted somehow but again, I’m not sure, so take this last bit with a grain of salt and also consider that a balkanized Brazil is a more than likely outcome.
 
Lisbon would be rebuilt even if not the capital but I still believe it would remain the capital. It could be built differently but I don’t think it would differ too much from OTL because I think they would give the task to the same architects.

John V’s reign was very much influenced by the church and many somewhat pressured Joseph I to change policies and the new King did not oppose such stance. Opposition to John V’s were the ones promoting Pombal so they would likely promote someone else with a thought similar to his but maybe more moderate, though I know not who. Maybe Luís da Cunha’s other suggestion, Gonçalo Manuel Galvão de Lacerda or Pombal’s first opponent in the Government, Diogo de Mendonça Corte-Real. Though I don’t have much information on either. I think we might see a reign similar to Maria I’s after the Viradeira.

I think it’s more than likely that mercantilism would be promoted, especially when the gold started to wane. Church influence would definitely be reduced in the country when compared with the previous reign and I’m pretty sure the Jesuits would too, after all, there was a campaign against them in many European countries by this time frame.

Slave trade in Metropolitan Portugal would be banned eventually and so would the discrimination against Cristãos-Novos, when, I’m not sure but if the French Revolution happens, then this will be addressed before the second half of the 19th Century.

Pombal did not ban the enslavement of Indians, I know from memory that Sebastian I tried to enforce the ban which likely happen far earlier though I don’t know when exactly. What Pombal could have done was to finally enforce the ban because even if early monarchs banned slavery of Indians, they could not stop the people from current São Paulo from enslaving Indians. Atlantic Slave Trade would remain as it was OTL, Minas Gerais did not use Indian slaves during the gold rush, and they used African slaves. The paulistas only went for Indian slaves because initially, they were too poor to buy African slaves.

As some other replies pointed out, Brazil would likely be more balkanized but I’m skeptical of Portuguese-Tupi creole taking hold of the whole country, especially with how many new arrivals occurred in the 18th Century that no doubt would speak Portuguese. At most, I think certainly regions would use the creole, like São Paulo and then it would depend if Portuguese America achieves independence, how it’s done and when it’s done.

As I said, it would be a far more balkanized Brazil and some regions would definitely feel more attached to Portugal like Grão-Pará and Maranhão in the north and Santa Catarina and the Rio Grande do Sul in the south which could remain as Portuguese possessions but others like Minas Gerais, Pernambuco and São Paulo could seek independence. Then we would have to see the strength of Portugal at the time of the revolts to see if any, part of or all of Brazil could be kept.

Now I’m not an expert in Brazilian but I’m pretty sure the rise of Protestantism in Brazil is tied a lot to the size of the country which prevented full evangelization by Catholics during colonial rule and the Empire which left a vacuum that was filled by those Evangelical Churches we see today during the Republic so I think it could be averted somehow but again, I’m not sure, so take this last bit with a grain of salt and also consider that a balkanized Brazil is a more than likely outcome.
Thank you so much for this reply! A Balkanized Brazil with a Creole-speaking São Paulo does sound a lot interesting
 
Is it fair to say that no Marquis of Pombal is a Brazil screw?
Not necessarily
Balkanized Brazil isnt a direct result, just likely due to butterflies as how a unified Brazil wasnt likely IOTL as well
The portuguese-tupi creole and not repression of the jesuits for one would be a great boost for brazilians, native or not
And with the jesuit monks you have better education, which by itself wont make Brazil a great power but if it remains unified and stable enough it could lead to Brazil becoming one of the "first world" nations early on
Less religious gap means lower chance of said vacuum being filled with radicals
As for indigenous slavery, it also could go both ways, without him forbidding it it could have got mixed up with african slavery which is terrible, but also IOTL there were reasons the enslavement of the natives was banned(they being rebellious, mass dying due to european diseases and plantation conditions, etc) and the jesuits which he repressed actively opposed slavery in general period so there's a chance it is banished waaaay earlier

So yah, could be a Brazil screw, could lead to a Super Brazil
Depends on the author and the butterflies
 
Not necessarily
Balkanized Brazil isnt a direct result, just likely due to butterflies as how a unified Brazil wasnt likely IOTL as well
The portuguese-tupi creole and not repression of the jesuits for one would be a great boost for brazilians, native or not
And with the jesuit monks you have better education, which by itself wont make Brazil a great power but if it remains unified and stable enough it could lead to Brazil becoming one of the "first world" nations early on
Less religious gap means lower chance of said vacuum being filled with radicals
As for indigenous slavery, it also could go both ways, without him forbidding it it could have got mixed up with african slavery which is terrible, but also IOTL there were reasons the enslavement of the natives was banned(they being rebellious, mass dying due to european diseases and plantation conditions, etc) and the jesuits which he repressed actively opposed slavery in general period so there's a chance it is banished waaaay earlier

So yah, could be a Brazil screw, could lead to a Super Brazil
Depends on the author and the butterflies
Thanks for the analysis, and I find it interesting that you mention that keeping the Jesuits in Brazil could be a wank, and it makes a lot of sense, education is essential to the development of any society
 
Top