The Carnation Revolution (Portuguese: Revolução dos Cravos), also referred to as the 25 de Abril (the 25th of April), was a military coup started on 25 April 1974, in Lisbon, Portugal, coupled with an unanticipated and extensive campaign of civil resistance. The Portuguese celebrate Freedom Day on 25 April every year, and the day is a national holiday in Portugal.
The name "Carnation Revolution" comes from the fact no shots were fired and when the population started descending the streets to celebrate the end of the dictatorship and war in the colonies, carnation flowers were put into the muzzles of rifles and on the uniforms of the army. These events effectively changed the Portuguese regime from an authoritarian dictatorship (the Estado Novo, or "New State") into a democracy, and produced enormous social, economic, territorial, demographic, and political changes in the country, after two years of a transitional period known as PREC (Processo Revolucionário Em Curso, or On-Going Revolutionary Process), characterized by social turmoil and power disputes between left- and right-wing political forces.
Despite repeated appeals from the revolutionaries on the radio asking the population to stay home, thousands of Portuguese descended on the streets, mixing with the military insurgents.
The military-led coup returned democracy to Portugal, ending the unpopular Colonial War where thousands of Portuguese soldiers had been conscripted into military service, and replacing the Estado Novo regime and its secret police which repressed elemental civil liberties and political freedoms. It started as a professional class protest of Portuguese Armed Forces captains against a decree law: the Dec Lei nº 353/73 of 1973.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia