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House of Aviz

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The House of Aviz modern Portuguese: Avis; Portuguese pronunciation: ɐˈviʃ was the second dynasty of the kings of Portugal In 1385, the Interregnum of the 1383-1385 crisis ended when the Cortes of Coimbra proclaimed the Master of the monastic military Order of Aviz as King John I1 John was the natural illegitimate son of King Peter I and Dona Teresa Lourenço, and so was half-brother to the last king of the Portuguese House of Burgundy or Afonsine Dynasty, Ferdinand I of Portugal The House of Aviz continued to rule Portugal until Philip II of Spain inherited the Portuguese crown with the Portuguese succession crisis of 1580

The descendants of King John I were still also Masters of Aviz, though at times that title passed to one descendant of John and the Crown of Portugal to another The title of Grand Master of the Order of Aviz was permanently incorporated into the Portuguese Crown toward the end of rule by the House of Aviz, in 15512


  • 1 History
  • 2 Aviz-Beja
  • 3 Monarchs
    • 31 Portugal
  • 4 Other notable infantes and infantas of the House of Aviz
  • 5 See also
  • 6 Coats of arms
  • 7 References
  • 8 External links


The House of Aviz was established as a result of the dynastic crisis following the 1383 death of Ferdinand I3 Ferdinand's widow Leonor Telles was disliked by both the nobility and the commoners for having left her first husband and for having had their marriage annulled in order to marry King Ferdinand Ferdinand's designated heir was their only surviving child Beatrice, married to John I of Castile who claimed the throne in the name of his wife,4 but under the Treaty of Salvaterra that had been the basis for John's marriage to Beatrice, the unpopular Leonor was left as Regent until such time as the son of Beatrice and John would be 14 years old

In April 1385, amidst popular revolt and civil war, the Cortes of Coimbra declared John, Master of Aviz, as king John I of Portugal He was half-brother of Ferdinand and natural son of Ferdinand's father and predecessor Pedro I He had the particular backing of the rising bourgeoisie of Lisbon; the nobility were split, with the majority favoring the legitimist Beatrice Troops under General Nuno Álvares Pereira defeated a small Castilian army at Valverde, assisted in part by a pestilence that had spread among their rival's forces This was followed, however, by a larger invasion of Castilian and Portuguese troops loyal to John of Castile and Beatrice

John of Aviz's rule became established fact with the Portuguese victory in the Battle of Aljubarrota5 on 14 August 1385, where he defeated John I of Castile4 A formal peace between Portugal and Castile would not be signed until 1411

To mark his victory, John founded the Monastery of Santa Maria da Vitória, known as the "Batalha Monastery" "Battle Monastery", whose chapel became the burial place of the princes of the new dynasty of Aviz

The House of Aviz would rule Portugal until Philip II of Spain annexed Portugal in 1580,6 after he had ordered the Duke of Alba to take Portugal by force7 The Cortes in Tomar acknowledged Philip II of Spain as King Philip I of Portugal on 16 April 1581 after this Spanish military intervention8 From 1581, the House of Aviz had ceased to rule any portion of continental Portugal; António, Prior of Crato held out in the Azores into 1582 as António I of Portugal; the last of his allies in the islands finally surrendered in 15839

This period of Portuguese history saw the ascent of Portugal to the status of a European and world power The conquest of Ceuta in 1415 was its first venture in colonial expansion,10 followed by a great outpouring of national energy and capital investment in the exploration of Africa, Asia and Brazil with the founding of colonies to exploit their resources commercially11 The period also includes the zenith of the Portuguese Empire during the reign of Manuel I and the beginning of its decline during John III's reign12

John III was succeeded in 1557 by his grandson Sebastian I of Portugal, who died, aged 24 and childless, in the Battle of Alcácer Quibir13 Sebastian was succeeded by his great-uncle Henry, aged 66, who, as a Catholic Cardinal, also had no children The Cardinal-King Henry died two years later, and a succession crisis occurred when pretenders to the throne including Catherine, Duchess of Braganza, Philip II of Spain, and António, Prior of Crato claimed the right to inherit it14

António, Prior of Crato, was acclaimed king in several cities around the country in 1580, twenty days before Philip II of Spain invaded Portugal and defeated the supporters of António in the Battle of Alcântara Although António had been proclaimed king, and was still regarded as rightful king in some of the Azores Islands until 1583,15 his legitimacy as a monarch is still disputed by historians Only a small minority of historians even in Portugal accept the period of twenty days between Anthony's acclamation and the Battle of Alcântara as his reign In Portugal he generally considered not as a national king, but as a patriot who led armed resistance to the Philippine domination

Joaquim Veríssimo Serrão, writing in 1956 and counting António as a king, dates the end of the dynasty's rule of Portugal as occurring in 1581–1582 The Cortes of Tomar had acclaimed Philip II of Spain as Philip I of Portugal in 1581, subsequently António's forces were utterly defeated at sea by Álvaro de Bazán at the Battle of Ponta Delgada off São Miguel Island in the Azores, on 26 July 1582 António then retreated to Terceira, where he supervised the raising of levies for defense, but in November he left Angra do Heroísmo en route to France16 to persuade the French to furnish more troops,9 800 of which arrived in June 158317 Philip had despatched Santa Cruz with an overwhelming force which left Lisbon on 23 June,18 and reaching sight of São Miguel some time after 7 July,19 finally reduced the Azores to subjection20

The House of Aviz was succeeded in Portugal by Philip's personal union of the Crowns of Portugal and Spain21 In Portuguese history this is variously referred to as the Philippine Dynasty,22 the House of Habsburg, or the House of Austria Portugal and Spain would share a common monarch until 1640, upon the proclamation of the Duke of Braganza as John IV of Portugal23


The term "Aviz-Beja" for the line descended from Manuel is rarely used in reliable sources The term appears in the genealogical trees in the two-volume work História de Portugal 1972 by A H de Oliveira Marques, the historian presented the House of Aviz in two separate diagrams He labeled the royal line from John I to Manuel as the "Avis" dynasty, and for the subsequent descent he called the line from Manuel I to António as "Avis-Beja", merely for ease of identification and reading


Main article: List of Portuguese monarchs


Name Cognomen Reigned Dynastic succession
John I The Good or The One of Happy Memory 1385 - 1433 Natural son of Pedro I, half-brother of Ferdinand I
Edward I The Philosopher or The Eloquent 1433 - 1438 Son of John I
Afonso V The African Conqueror 1438 - 1481 Son of Edward I
John II The Perfect Prince 1481 - 1495 Son of Afonso V
Manuel I The Fortunate 1495 - 1521 Grandson of Edward I, cousin of John II
John III The Pious 1521 - 1557 Son of Manuel I
Sebastian The Desired 1557 - 1578 Grandson of John III, son of John Manuel, Prince of Portugal
Henry The Chaste 1578 - 1580 Son of Manuel I, younger brother of John III
António The Determined 1580 disputed Grandson of Manuel I's, natural son of Infante Louis, Duke of Beja

Other notable infantes and infantas of the House of Avizedit

  • Isabella of Portugal, Duchess of Burgundy, twice regent of the Burgundian Low Countries; wife of Philip the Good, Duke of Burgundy, mother of Charles the Bold
  • Henry the Navigator, Duke of Viseu
  • Infante Peter, Duke of Coimbra, regent of Portugal for nine years
  • Ferdinand the Holy Prince
  • John, Lord of Reguengos de Monsaraz, constable of the kingdom, son of John I
  • Joanna, Princess of Portugal, daughter of Afonso V Regent of Portugal and Roman Catholic saint
  • Infante Ferdinand, Duke of Viseu, also first Duke of Beja
  • Eleanor of Viseu, daughter of Ferdinand, Duke of Viseu and wife of John II of Portugal
  • Isabella of Portugal, empress of the Holy Roman Empire, queen of Aragon, Castile, Sicily, and Naples, wife of Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor Charles I of Spain
  • Eleanor of Portugal, Holy Roman Empress, wife of Frederick III, Holy Roman Emperor
  • Afonso I, Duke of Braganza, first duke of Braganza, eighth count Barcelos, natural son of John I
  • Peter V of Aragon, son of Peter, Duke of Coimbra King of Aragon, count of Urgell and constable of the kingdom
  • James of Portugal, son of Peter, Duke of Coimbra Cardinal and Archbishop of Lisbon
  • Infanta Beatrice of Coimbra married Adolph of Adolph of Cleves, Lord of Ravenstein
  • Infanta Philippa of Coimbra unmarried, served as a mother to John II after the death of her sister, Isabella of Coimbra Lived in the monastery of Odivelas
  • Isabella of Coimbra, daughter of Peter, Duke of Coimbra, first wife of Afonso V, mother of John II
  • John, Prince of Antioch, son of Peter, Duke of Coimbra
  • Infante Louis, Duke of Beja, son of Manuel I, lover and possibly later husband of the beautiful and wealthy New Christian Violante Gomes; their son António, Prior of Crato was the disputed last Aviz king of Portugal
  • Infante Edward, 4th Duke of Guimarães, constable of the kingdom
  • Catherine, Duchess of Braganza, daughter of Edward, 4th Duke of Guimarães, niece of King Henry, grandmother of John IV of Portugal
  • Infanta Maria of Guimarães, daughter of Edward, 4th Duke of Guimarães, wife of Alexander Farnese, Duke of Parma and hence Duchess of Parma, who brought the previously exotic Portuguese cuisine to the rest of Europe
  • Infante Edward, 5th Duke of Guimarães, son of Edward, 4th Duke of Guimarães, constable of the kingdom
  • Beatrice of Portugal, Duchess of Savoy, daughter of Manuel I, who brought the name "Manuel" Italian: "Emanuele" into the House of Savoy

See alsoedit

  • House of Aviz kings of Portugal family tree
  • Illustrious Generation
  • Portugal in the period of discoveries
  • Timeline of Portuguese history
  • Descendants of Manuel I of Portugal

Coats of armsedit

Coat of Arms Title Time Held
King of Portugal 1385–1580
King of the Algarve 1385–1580
Lord of Guinea 1485–1580
Lord of Ceuta 1415–1471


  1. ^ António Henrique R de Oliveira Marques 1972 History of Portugal: From Lusitania to Empire ; vol 2, From Empire to Corporate State Columbia University Press pp 127–128 ISBN 978-0-231-03159-2 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  2. ^ António Henrique R de Oliveira Marques 1984 História de Portugal, desde os tempos mais antigos até à presidência do Sr General Eanes: Do Renascimento às revoluções liberais Palas Editores p 110 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  3. ^ Christopher Allmand; Rosamond McKitterick 18 June 1998 The New Cambridge Medieval History: Volume 7, C1415-c1500 Cambridge University Press p 629 ISBN 978-0-521-38296-0 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  4. ^ a b Guida Myrl Jackson-Laufer 1999 Women Rulers Throughout the Ages: An Illustrated Guide ABC-CLIO p 52 ISBN 978-1-57607-091-8 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  5. ^ Clifford J Rogers; Kelly DeVries; Jobyhn France 1 November 2010 Journal of Medieval Military History Boydell & Brewer p 153 ISBN 978-1-84383-596-7 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  6. ^ Fernand Braudel 1982 Civilization and Capitalism, 15th-18th Century, Vol III: The Perspective of the World University of California Press p 32 ISBN 978-0-520-08116-1 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  7. ^ David Hilliam 2005 Philip II: King Of Spain and Leader of the Counter-Reformation The Rosen Publishing Group p 87 ISBN 978-1-4042-0317-4 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  8. ^ Fernando Cabo Aseguinolaza; Anxo Abuín González; César Domínguez 2010 A Comparative History of Literatures in the Iberian Peninsula John Benjamins Publishing p 595 ISBN 978-90-272-3457-5 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  9. ^ a b Joaquim Veríssimo Serrão 1956 O reinado de D Antonio prior do Crato Coimbra p 477 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  10. ^ Julia Ortiz Griffin; William D Griffin 1 January 2007 Spain and Portugal: A Reference Guide from the Renaissance to the Present Infobase Publishing p 288 ISBN 978-0-8160-7476-1 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  11. ^ Douglas L Wheeler; Walter C Opello 10 May 2010 Historical Dictionary of Portugal Scarecrow Press pp 8–10 ISBN 978-0-8108-7075-8 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  12. ^ Fernão Mendes Pinto January 1989 Mendes Pinto/Catz: Travels of Mendes Pinto University of Chicago Press p xxii ISBN 978-0-226-66951-9 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  13. ^ Spencer C Tucker 23 December 2009 A Global Chronology of Conflict: From the Ancient World to the Modern Middle East ABC-CLIO p 534 ISBN 978-1-85109-672-5 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  14. ^ John Lynch 1964 Spain Under the Habsburgs: Empire and absolutism, 1516-1598 Oxford University Press p 307 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  15. ^ Archivo dos Açores University of Michigan 1887 p 491 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  16. ^ David B Quinn 1979 England and the Azores, 1581-1582: Three Letters UC Biblioteca Geral 1 p 213 GGKEY:X1C130EKZX6 Retrieved 24 June 2013 
  17. ^ Colin Martin; Geoffrey Parker January 1999 The Spanish Armada: Revised Edition Manchester University Press p 73 ISBN 978-1-901341-14-0 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  18. ^ João Pedro Vaz 2005 Campanhas do prior do Crato, 1580-1589: entre reis e corsários pelo trono de Portugal Tribuna da História p 74 ISBN 978-972-8799-27-4 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  19. ^ Rafael Valladares 28 February 2012 A Conquista de Lisboa Leya ISBN 978-972-47-4348-6 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  20. ^ Thomas Henry Dyer; Arthur Hassall 1901 1525-1585 G Bell and sons p 475 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  21. ^ Kevin Joseph Sheehan 2008 Iberian Asia: The Strategies of Spanish and Portuguese Empire Building, 1540--1700 ProQuest pp 126–129 ISBN 978-1-109-09710-8 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  22. ^ António da Silva Rego 1965 Portuguese Colonization in the Sixteenth Century: A Study of the Royal Ordinances Regimentos Witwatersrand University Press p 3 Retrieved 25 June 2013 
  23. ^ CR Boxer 1 July 1973 The Portuguese Seaborne Empire, 1415-1825 Penguin p 112 Retrieved 25 June 2013 

External linksedit

Royal House House of Aviz Cadet branch of the Portuguese House of Burgundy
Preceded by
House of Burgundy

Ruling House of the Kingdom of Portugal

1385 – 1580
Succeeded by
House of Habsburg

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