26.1.12

 

 

 
 

António Júdice Bustorff Silva (de pé), Lisboa c. 1950

 

 

 

 

Obituário de The Times,  3 de Janeiro de 1980:

 

The distinguished lawyer, Dr Antonio Judice Bustorff Silva, who died in Lisbon on Dec­ember 17, aged 84, will be affec­tionately remembered by many of the older generation of British entrepreneurs in Portu­gal.

 

He was at one time or another chairman, director or legal adviser of many important British enterprises, including the Tramways of Lisbon and the Telephones of Lisbon and Oporto, both of which until a few years ago were operated by British Concessionary Com­panies.

 

Born in 1895 on the island of Sao Tome, where his father had big plantations, Dr Bustorff, as he was always known, took his law degree at Coimbra Uni­versity. His youth was spent in the turbulent times of the end of the monarchy and the birth of the First Republic. He was an ardent monarchist, and it must have been with a sense of relief that he saw the Generals take over in 1926, after a suc­cession of more than 40 Repub­lican Governments in 16 years.

 

Bustorff was the legal repre­sentative of the Royal Family, and when the Generals called in Dr Salazar (himself a crypto-monarchist) it was in dealing with the affairs of the Royal Family that the friendship and confidence between the two men began and later became of such value to his clients, Portu­guese or foreign.

 

Bustorff was a steadfast admirer of Salazar and his general policies, but he was never a toady and his advice to the Prime Minister, on behalf of his clients, was invariably what he thought to be compat­ible with the interests of the client and of the Portuguese State.

 

One of the most important services rendered by Bustorff to his own country and to the Allied cause during the Second World War concerned the ex­ploitation of uranium. The Portuguese Government was approached by Britain, and Salazar decided that Bustorff would represent the Portuguese Government in the company which was to carry out the work.

 

He was also legal adviser to the British-owned Panasqueira Mines, the largest source of wolfram available to the West and a constant source of dispute between the economic warriors of each side. After the war Bustorff was made honorary CBE, a decoration of which he was immensely proud.

 

A man of enormous energy Bustorff frequently represented Portugal at international con­ferences. He had great devotion to his Church and a true sense of humour. His Germanic name is from a Swiss ancestor who came to Portugal in the 17th century to escape the persecu­tion of Roman Catholics.

 

He spoke several languages fluently but, in his bubbling enthusiasm, not always cor­rectly. «Come and see my Charolais veals», he would say to an English guest at his estate near Setubal, «they are beau­ties". He entertained lavishly and the food and wines were always Portuguese and usually produced by him.

 

The passion of his leisure time was building, especially restoring old houses. He built or restored one for each of his five children and for each pair of his 24 grandchildren.

 

When the Second Republic came in 1974 Bustorff was already virtually retired, but he was summoned to Brazil, where more legal work awaited him and he went in 1975, aged 80. He suffered a stroke there and was brought home. Lucid and able to speak, he struggled bravely for two years, as presi­dent of the Bragança Founda­tion and supervising proper­ties which had not been seques­trated.

 

It can be postulated that the «Blue Monkey» Marques de Soveral, of Edward Vll's time, and Bustorff Silva, were the most steadfast and most influ­ential Portuguese friends of Britain in the 20th century.

 

 

 

Sir Peter Norton-Griffiths

in "The Times"  3 January 1980

 

 

Notas:

 

 

António Júdice Bustorff Silva formou-se em Direito em Lisboa e não em Coimbra como afirma o autor do artigo.

 

 

Foto e perfil do Marquês de Soveral aqui 

 

 

 

 

 

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