portuguese king

Old Statue of Don Afonso the Conqueror, the first Portuguese King.

His most famous victory was in 1139 at the battle of Ourique, where he defeated the armies of 5 Muslim Kings, during the Reconquista in Iberia.

The legend of the miracle of Ourique

Some years later after the battle, the idea of a miraculous intervention by Saint James in favor of the Portuguese appeared in the chronicles of the battle. 

Saint James (a.k.a. the Moor-Slayer) was widely venerated in Iberia, in such a way, that for centuries Iberian Kingdoms during war confrontations used a famous battle-cry exalting his name: (Por Santiago!)

In the legend, Don Afonso is visited before the battle by an old man who saw in a dream that Afonso would be victorious because God would intervene in his favor. He advised the King to leave the encampment alone when he heard the bell of the local chapel. Riding off he was surprised by a ray of light that showed him the sign of the cross and Christ on a crucifix. Don Afonso knelt in its presence and heard the voice of Christ who told him he would defeat the Moors, which he, through courage and his faith, succeeded the following day.

Afonso fought the Moors (Muslims) for 46 years.

Queen Nzinga Mbande (1583-1663), sometimes referred to as Anna Nzinga, was ruler of the Ndongo and Matamba Kingdoms of the Mbundu people in what is now Angola.

As the favoured daughter of King Kiluanji of the Ndongo, Nzinga Mbande was brought up witnessing her father’s governance of the kingdom first-hand. He even took her with him when he went to war. Kiluanji made deals with the Portuguese who were expanding their slave trading operations in South West Africa, and this relationship was maintained when her brother Ngola Hari became king. However in 1617 the Portuguese Governor Correia de Sousa launched attacks against the Ndongo kingdom that captured thousands of Mbundu people.

In 1621 when the Portuguese invited the Ndongo king to take part in peace talks, he sent his sister Nzinga Mbande in his place. At her famous first meeting with De Sousa chairs were only provided for the Portuguese, and Mbande was expected to sit on the floor. Instead she commanded one of her servants to go down on all fours and act as her chair. During the negotiations Mbande walked a fine line between preventing the Portuguese from controlling the kingdom as they had done in Kongo, while keeping options open to trade for firearms to strengthen her armies. In this she was successful, although as a condition of the agreement she had to convert to Christianity and was baptised as Anna de Sousa, with the Governor becoming her Godfather.

In 1626 Mbande became Queen of the Ndongo following the death of her brother. Her reign began in peril as the Portuguese went back on their deal with her and declared war, as did other neighbouring tribes. Forced into retreat from her own lands, Mbande led her people south to the kingdom of Matamba, which she attacked, capturing Matamba’s Queen and routing her army. Mbande then installed herself as the new ruler of Matamba, from where she launched a prolonged campaign of guerrilla warfare against the Portuguese which would last for the next 30 years.

Mbande developed a legendary reputation as a warrior, although claims that that she took part in human sacrifice are likely the result of European propaganda and gossip. Accounts that she maintained a personal harem of more than 50 men are also unproven. What is known is that Mbande assembling a diverse army to oppose the Portuguese that included runaway slaves, defecting soldiers, and women. Exploiting European rivalries she made an alliance with the Dutch, which included acquiring her own personal bodyguard of 60 Dutch elite soldiers armed with rifles. Working with the Dutch, Mbande successfully defeated Portuguese armies in 1644, 1646, and 1647. However the Dutch were eventually pushed out of the region in 1648 and Mbanda was forced to carry on the fight alone. While she was never able to completely defeat them, she successfully resisted Portuguese invasion for decades.

Mbande continued personally leading her troops into battle until she was in her sixties, but the long war eventually wore both sides down. In 1657 she finally signed a peace treaty with Portugal. She then spent the rest of her life focused on rebuilding a nation which had been devastated by conflict and over-farming. She died of natural causes in 1663, aged 81. Today Nzinga Mbande is a symbol of Angolan independence, memorialised by numerous statues.


The Siege of Chaul, 1571

1,200 Portuguese vs 150,000 Muslims 

Source: “Homens, Espadas e Tomates” by Rainer Daehnhardt

anonymous asked:

Congratulations on your blog! I love Portugal !! Sebastian of Portugal is one of my favorite figures of all time !!! Saw your video about his warhelm, it is absolutely beautiful and intriguing! Can you tell me more about his first crusade? I tried to search matterial about it but couldn't find anything. Thank you!

Kind words my friend, I appreciate it. I actually made a recent post all about that first campaign, it also happened in Morocco and it was a successful raid.

I’ll tell you a bit about it nonetheless.

The Portuguese soldiers embarked to Morocco with a small force of 1.200 foot and horse, led by the King himself of course. It was an almost secretive departure, that can best be explained by taking into account the fierce opposition to his personal participation in the expedition, both by his grandmother and his uncle, the Cardinal D. Henrique.

The fleet anchored at Ceuta, one of the Portuguese holdings inside Morocco, and it remained there until the end of September. The time was spent organizing small probing raids that gave everyone a taste of frontier warfare. 

With no enemy movements taking place (at first) a brief, but most interesting military action was undertaken. The entire galley fleet, ten ships, was dispatched on a raid near the town of Tetuan. 

A little more than a dozen horse were landed, and after brief combat with assorted Muslim horsemen they re-embarked with three prisoners, under the cover of musket and cannon fire from the ships. The King sought to gain insight of the town’s surrounding field, just as he had done at Ceuta, and just a few days after arrival, several exploratory sorties were made. 

The presence of the Portuguese King would not go unnoticed for long.

News that the Muslim Sharīf was concentrating several thousand soldiers in the city of Fez arrived on 4 October, and on 8 October the opposing army was spotted by the Portuguese scouts. 

The Muslim forces (3,000-4,000 horsemen and 4,000-5,000 infantry) were approaching from the South, deployed in a crescent-shaped formation. With the enemy within reach, the King decided to fight in the open field.

A week of skirmishes between the Moors and the Portuguese followed.

By that time, the King and his closest officers had a clear picture of the local topography, enough to choose an adequate battlefield for a more vast assault.

The plan envisaged an interesting multiple articulation of static defences, infantry, cavalry, and naval support. The static defence was naturally provided by the fortifications of Tangier, and the deployment of the mobile troops sought to take advantage of the best static features. 

The mission of the naval forces was to ensure the enemy would find himself channelled so as to face the strongest defence nexus.

At dawn on 20 October 1574 the approximately 900 horse and 2,000 foot Portuguese forces left the town and manned the outer works on the west side.

Two infantry companies were placed astride the main roads thus controlling the land access to Tangier. Another two companies stood on the flanks, and plus 70 mounted arquebusiers went ahead of the army to harass the enemy as it approached the defensive lines. 

Two other cavalry squadrons occupied the two tranqueiras, and a larger squadron took position at the front.

The cannon and musket fire from the galleys pushed the enemies towards but, at the same time, this added further pressure on the defenders in the area, and the clash degenerated into a series of disordered skirmishes fought along the entire fortified front.

This prompted the King to finally join the front lines in the early afternoon, around 3pm, as a confused melee continued to rage until the very end of the day between the Portuguese and the Moors.

Convinced that the disordered skirmish on the day before could have been avoided had he been in charge, the King decided the next day to stand in the ranks of the army from the very beginning.

The next day, by 8am, the army took the field and spent three hours carefully building a nearly identical order of battle.

The only addition was to put some reserve cavalry in a flanking position: this consisted of 100 horse under Gonçalves, who took position in ambush behind a recently made tranqueira that closed off access to the north section of the town walls. The enemy hesitated to attack such a strong formation and tried to make the defenders leave their positions.

The King saw his opportunity to enter the front lines again, and ordered his cousin, D. António, to withdraw to the ravelin, leaving the way open for him to make a charge at the head of some 60 acobertados (portuguese heavy cavalry).

The noisy and irresistible onslaught of the heavily armoured horses quickly wiped out all the Muslim resistance, putting a sudden end to the fight. A scout sent out on Friday 22 October confirmed that the enemy forces had abandoned the outskirts of Tangier, leaving a long trail stretching over nearly three miles. 

On the following day the King engaged in some bullfighting, one of his favourite sports, and the troops began to board the ships.

Finally, on Monday 25 October 1574 the fleet left Tangier, and after a difficult return journey it managed to arrive safely at the Cape of São Vicente on 2 November.

Viva el Rey!


Michael Jackson zipping up his fly during performing Another Part Of Me. (x)

anonymous asked:

Who is your favourite Portuguese King?

Probably Dom Afonso I. He was an astute general, clever diplomat, and a dynamic personality, to boot. It’s probably apocryphal that he strolled around the nobility of Europe, challenging kings to personal combat, but that’s such a great myth. 

So for those who don’t know the story, Portugal wasn’t always a kingdom. It was a county for a while and the frequent target of the Umayyad Caliphs of Cordoba. It was a holding of the Kingdom of Leon, where its position on the front lines against Cordoba often afforded it special privileges and autonomy (but not always). After that, it was briefly held incorporated the Kingdom of Galicia, then re-established as a formal county about 25 years later. Raymond of Burgundy held the entire territories of the former kingdom in recognition for his victories in the Crusades, but King Alfonso (not to be confused with Afonso) later broke those territories up to split Raymond’s power base. This was given to Afonso who conquered plenty of territory and led to his men declaring him king after his spectacular victory at Orique. Desiring independence, he was able to get the pope to recognize him as a vassal and get out of the thumb of the King of Leon, and that a few years after, getting the Papacy to declare him an independent king thanks to the service and privileges granted to the Church.

Thanks for the question, Anon.

SomethingLikeALawyer, Hand of the King#


The war helm of King of Portugal D.Sebastião, the Desired

This is the world leading war helm with the biggest amount of cuts in it89 marks of scimitars and swords marked on its steel, none of them are in the rear.

Meaning that the young 24 years old Portuguese King never showed his back to his moorish enemies, even while wearing his bullet proof armor. The war helm that holds the 2nd place, has 24 sword cuts, this one has 89.

This scientific investigation also proves that this 5kg steel war helm suffered the impact of a 16th century grenade launcher.

I have finally finished subtitling this video, where this german-portuguese historian, Rainer Daehnhardt, tells us about the helm used by El-Rei de Portugal D.Sebastião and why at least 70 swords shattered when hitting it. Of why this war helm actually weighted zero kg (!) when using it, allowing great agility for its carrier. 

For those who love armors and war technology, this is the video for you.

“He fought against a hundred, possibly even against a thousand men. He did not take a step back. Blessed be the country you born and the flag you defended!”

— Rainer Daehnhardt

A Caboclo couple from Manaus in the state of Amazonas, Brazil.

The term Caboclo is the Brazilian equivalent to the Mexican racial concept of a Mestizo, or the Canadian racial designation of a Métis; a person of mixed Native American and European ancestry.

In the Brazilian national racial narrative the two main races focused on are whites and blacks, with those of Indigenous descent and culture often overshadowed. However, the Caboclo’s were Brazil’s first racially-mixed group, starting from the 16th century when the Portuguese king, Joseph I of Portugal, encouraged intermixing between Portuguese colonizers and Native Brazilian women. Much of the Caboclo population was centered in the Northeast of the country, until Brazil’s first and second rubber boom, when white and Caboclo people from that region were compulsorily drafted to harvest rubber in the Amazon. These people were not permitted to leave the Amazon and were forced to settle there permanently. This resulted in more miscegenation between people of European and Native descent, distinguishing it from the North-Eastern region where people of African and mixed black descent were far more common. For this reason, most of the Caboclo’s of today are located in the northern states of Brazil such as Amapá, Amazonas, Pará, and Tocantins.

As mentioned above, people of Amerindian and mixed Amerindian descent are often overshadowed in Brazilian society. This has gone as far as to cause erasure of the Caboclo’s by the Brazilian government. On the Brazilian census the official category for people of mixed-race ancestry is “pardo” (brown), and since most mixed-race people in Brazil are of European and African descent, certain government agencies group all pardos as Afro-Brazilians. Thus many Caboclo’s who have no African ancestry at all are presented as Afro-Brazilians, and issues concerning them alone as a racial minority group are ignored by the state in favor of the Afro-descended minority groups.  


The Irish Slave Trade

There has been a lot of whitewashing of the Irish slave trade, partly by not mentioning it, and partly by labelling slaves as indentured servants. There were indeed indentureds, including English, French, Spanish and even a few Irish. But there is a great difference between the two. Indentures bind two or more parties in mutual obligations. Servant indentures were agreements between an individual and a shipper in which the individual agreed to sell his services for a period of time in exchange for passage, and during his service, he would receive proper housing, food, clothing, and usually a piece of land at the end of the term of service. It is believed that some of the Irish that went to the Amazon settlement after the Battle of Kinsale and up to 1612 were exiled military who went voluntarily, probably as indentureds to Spanish or Portuguese shippers.

King James II and Charles I also led a continued effort to enslave the Irish. Britain’s famed Oliver Cromwell furthered this practice of dehumanizing one’s next door neighbor.

The Irish slave trade began when James II sold 30,000 Irish prisoners as slaves to the New World. His Proclamation of 1625 required Irish political prisoners be sent overseas and sold to English settlers in the West Indies. By the mid 1600s, the Irish were the main slaves sold to Antigua and Montserrat. At that time, 70% of the total population of Montserrat were Irish slaves.

Ireland quickly became the biggest source of human livestock for English merchants. The majority of the early slaves to the New World were actually white.

From 1641 to 1652, over 500,000 Irish were killed by the English and another 300,000 were sold as slaves. Ireland’s population fell from about 1,500,000 to 600,000 in one single decade. Families were ripped apart as the British did not allow Irish dads to take their wives and children with them across the Atlantic. This led to a helpless population of homeless women and children. Britain’s solution was to auction them off as well.

During the 1650s, over 100,000 Irish children between the ages of 10 and 14 were taken from their parents and sold as slaves in the West Indies, Virginia and New England. In this decade, 52,000 Irish (mostly women and children) were sold to Barbados and Virginia.

The initial plan was to offer freedom to Irish slaves on the island of Barbados and elsewhere or to take more rebellious Irish slaves and transport them to Jamaica where they would be offered their freedom and 30 acres of land to work. Cromwell also launched appeals within England and the Americas for planters to come to the new colony of Jamaica. This met with little success and so Cromwell increased his drive to liberate and offer freedom & land to indentured servants in Barbados. The policy met with resistance from the plantation owners of Barbados as one would expect. They quickly complained about being short of labour to work their sugar crops. Therefore, many plantation owners moved along with their Irish slaves to Jamaica also and were granted land there.

At the same time another 30,000 Irish men and women were also transported and sold to the highest bidders in Jamaica. In 1656, Cromwell also ordered that 2,000 Irish children be taken to Jamaica and sold as slaves to English settlers as well. Repeated escape attempts were punished with hangings. Slaves who struck salve owners or plantation owners were burned alive in a gruesome manner. A visitor to Jamaica in 1687 reports that “they are nailed to the ground with crooked sticks on every limb and then applying the fires by degrees from the feet, burning them gradually up to the head, whereby their pains are extravagant”.

There was no racial consideration or discrimination, you were either a freeman or a slave, but there was aggressive religious discrimination, with the Pope considered by all English Protestants to be the enemy of God and civilization, and all Catholics heathens and hated. Irish Catholics were not considered to be Christians. On the other hand, the Irish were literate, usually more so than the plantation owners, and thus were used as house servants, account keepers, scribes and teachers. But any infraction was dealt with the same severity, whether African or Irish, field worker or domestic servant. Floggings were common, and if a planter beat an Irish slave to death, it was not a crime, only a financial loss, and a lesser loss than killing a more expensive African. African slaves were very expensive during the late 1600s (50 Sterling). Irish slaves came cheap (no more than 5 Sterling). If a planter whipped or branded or beat an Irish slave to death, it was never a crime. A death was a monetary setback, but far cheaper than killing a more expensive African. Parliament passed the Act to Regulate Slaves on British Plantations in 1667, designating authorized punishments to include whippings and brandings for slave offenses against a Christian. Irish Catholics were not considered Christians, even if they were freemen.

Like with what was done to African girls and women, the English masters quickly began breeding the Irish women for both their own personal pleasure and for greater profit. Children of slaves were themselves slaves, which increased the size of the master’s free workforce. Even if an Irish woman somehow obtained her freedom, her kids would remain slaves of her master. Thus, Irish moms, even with this new found emancipation, would seldom abandon their kids and would remain in servitude.

In time, the English thought of a better way to use these women (in many cases, girls as young as 12) to increase their market share: The settlers began to breed Irish girls and women with African men to produce slaves with a distinct complexion. These “mulatto” slaves brought a higher price than Irish livestock and, likewise, enabled the settlers to save money rather than purchase new African slaves. This practice of interbreeding Irish females with African men went on for several decades and was so widespread that, in 1681, legislation was passed “forbidding the practice of mating Irish slave women to African slave men for the purpose of producing slaves for sale.” In short, it was stopped only because it interfered with the profits of a large slave transport company.

England continued to ship tens of thousands of Irish slaves for more than a century. Records state that, after the 1798 Irish Rebellion, thousands of Irish slaves were sold to both America and Australia. One British ship even dumped 1,302 slaves into the Atlantic Ocean so that the crew would have plenty of food to eat.

Historical Irish immigration to Jamaica occurred primarily (but not exclusively) through importation of Irish slaves and also constituted [along with the Indian Diaspora and Chinese Diaspora …etc.] one of the largest recorded historical ethnic influxs into the country. Some Irish slaves in Jamaica were indentured servants – especially during the 19th century – but most more were complete chattel slaves imported by tens of thousands by the English. “Jamaican Patois” – which contains some words of Gaelic origin – is often spoken in a dialect(s) that is heavily Irish-influenced, with some minor Scottish-influence. Like Barbados, Jamaica has a sizable “White” population that incudes those of Irish ancestry.

There is, also, very little question that those brown, tanned faces you witness in your travels to the West Indies are very likely a combination of African and Irish ancestry. In 1839, Britain finally decided on it’s own to end it’s participation in Satan’s highway to hell and stopped transporting slaves. While their decision did not stop pirates from doing what they desired, the new law slowly concluded this chapter of nightmarish Irish misery.

Many people today will avoid calling the Irish slaves what they truly were: Slaves. They’ll come up with terms like “Indentured Servants” to describe what occurred to the Irish. However, in most cases from the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish slaves were nothing more than human cattle.

from here with @victorvonkleist !!

“Wallowing never suited you anyway,” he said as he glanced at the older man. The prince had grown much too used to seeing a smile on his features. His perpetual positive disposition was something Victor found himself criticising a lot about the Portuguese king, but today, he wouldn’t mind seeing a smile on the older man’s face. “If I ever see you wallowing in self-pity, I would be the first one to tell you how pathetic you look.”

“You’re right. It doesn’t does it?” He asked through a deep rumble of laughter, a smile cracking on his face. It was not the same smile as usual, but it’s getting there –– the hints of his old smile and his old charm though dimmed ever so slightly. Still, he squared up and gave a sigh, as if with it, every sorrow that he had might be rinsed out. “Well then, I guess that’s enough of that. Sorry you had to see that, Victor. You see being a king is all about performance, and I’m afraid I gave you a bad one today.” No rest for a king, not even for a moment of grief.