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Mr. Beat compares and contrasts the two Iberian Peninsula countries that once dominated the entire world. #spain #portugal
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Portugal and Spain, or the Portuguese Republic and the Kingdom of Spain
The two neighboring southwestern European countries that make up most of the Iberian Peninsula. At one point in history, the two had major empires around the world, and were two of the early major players during the Age of Exploration, but more on that a little later.
Despite both not being that particularly big as countries go, both have had a tremendous influence over the entire world. One example of that? Well around 250 million people around the world today speak Portuguese, the official language of Portugal. Around 525 million people around the world today speak Spanish, the official language of Spain, making it the fourth most-spoken language in the world.
The largest city in both countries is also the capital. However, Madrid, the capital and largest city in Spain, is two and a half times bigger than Lisbon, the capital and largest city in Portugal.
Both have among the highest life expectancy in the entire world. (S-83.3, P-81.3) The average age in both is about the same. (S-43, P-42.2)
Both have islands quite a ways off the mainland in the Atlantic Ocean. Spain has the Canary Islands down here. Portugal has the Azores and Madeira here and here. Spain also has the Balearic Islands of its east coast.
On the mainland, both generally don’t have to worry about natural disasters that much. Sure, there are occasional earthquakes, but rarely do the earthquakes do that much damage. One big exception is a devastating earthquake that almost completely destroyed Lisbon in 1755.
Both have a lot of debt, although Portugal’s debt is worse. The poverty rate is about the same in both, although it’s a bit higher in Portugal. (S-21.6%, P- 23.3%)
Both are in the European Union. Both don’t have the death penalty nor life in prison for crimes. In fact, Portugal was the first country in the world to get rid of life in prison, way back in 1884. Football, aka soccer… is the most popular sport in both countries. Well duh. The running of the bulls is a regular crazy event in both countries, although it’s the one in Pamplona, Spain that gets worldwide attention every year. A passionate minority in both also loves bullfighting.
But what about their differences? There’s actually quite a bit more.
Spain also has almost five times as many people. (S- 49 million, P- 10.3 million) While Spain’s population has been growing at a slow pace, Portugal’s population has been shrinking for several years now.
Spain borders not only Portugal to the west, but also France and the tiny country of Andorra to the north. Morocco is also just a 14 km jump over the Strait of Gibraltar. Portugal, the westernmost country of continental Europe, is only bordered by Spain and is often like, “Spain, get off me bro!”
Spain is more religious. While the majority of residents in both identify as Roman Catholic, over 27% of Spain residents have no religion.