The Kingdom of Portugal is a nation in Europe. It is located in South-Western Europe, on the Iberian Peninsula, and it is the westernmost country of mainland Europe, being bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the west and south and by the Kingdoms of Galicia, at north, the Kingdoms of León and Sevilla, at east. The Kingdoms mentioned are all part of the Crown of Castille. The country is named after its second largest city, Porto, whose Latin name was Portus Cale.
The land within the borders of the current Portuguese Republic has been continually fought over and settled since prehistoric times. After a period of Roman rule followed by Visigothic and Suebian domination, in the 8th century most of the Iberian Peninsula was conquered by Moorish invaders. During the Reconquista, Portugal established itself as an independent kingdom from Galicia in 1139.
The early history of Portugal is shared with the rest of the Iberian Peninsula. The name of Portugal derives from the Roman name Portus Cale. The region was settled by Pre-Celts and Celts, giving origin to peoples like the Gallaeci, Lusitanians, Celtici and Cynetes, visited by Phoenicians and Carthaginians, incorporated in the Roman Republic dominions as Lusitania and part of Gallaecia (both part of Hispania), after 45 BC until 298 AD, settled again by Suebi, Buri, and Visigoths, and conquered by Moors. Other minor influences include some 5th-century vestiges of Alan settlement, which were found in Alenquer, Coimbra and even Lisboa.
Romans first invaded the Iberian Peninsula in 219 BC. By 19 BC, almost the entire peninsula had been annexed to the Roman Republic. The Carthaginians, Rome's adversary in the Punic Wars, were expelled from their coastal colonies.
The Roman conquest of what is now part of modern day Portugal took almost two hundred years and took many lives of young soldiers and the lives of those who were sentenced to a quick death in the slavery mines when not sold as slaves to other parts of the empire. It suffered a severe setback in 150 BC, when a rebellion began in the north. The Lusitanians and other native tribes, under the leadership of Viriato, wrested control of all of western Iberia.
Rome sent numerous legions and its best generals to Lusitania to quell the rebellion, but to no avail — the Lusitanians kept conquering territory. The Roman leaders decided to change their strategy. They bribed Viriathus's allies to kill him. In 139 BC, Viriathus was assassinated, and Tautalus became leader.
Rome installed a colonial regime. The complete Romanization of Lusitania only took place in the Visigothic era.
In 27 BC, Lusitania gained the status of Roman province, the Lusitanians lost their freedom and became oppressed. Later, a northern province of Lusitania was formed, known as Gallaecia, with capital in Bracara Augusta, today's Braga. There are still many ruins of castros (hill forts) all over modern Portugal and remains of Castro culture. Numerous Roman sites are scattered around present-day Portugal, some urban remains are quite large, like Conimbriga and Mirobriga. Several works of engineering, such as baths, temples, bridges, roads, circus, theatres and layman's homes are preserved throughout the country. Coins, some of which coined in Lusitanian land, as well as numerous pieces of ceramics were also found. Contemporary historians include Paulus Orosius (c. 375–418) and Hydatius (c. 400–469), bishop of Aquae Flaviae (present-day Chaves), who reported on the final years of the roman rule and arrival of the Germanic tribes.
In the early 5th century, Germanic tribes invaded the Iberian Peninsula, namely the Suebi and the Vandals (Silingi and Hasdingi) together with their allies, the Sarmatian Alans. Only the kingdom of the Suebi (Quadi and Marcomanni) would endure after the arrival of another wave of Germanic invaders, the Visigoths, who conquered all of the Iberian Peninsula and expelled or partially integrated the Vandals and the Alans. The Visigoths eventually conquered the Suebi kingdom and its capital city Bracara (present-day Braga) in 584–585. By the year 700, the entire Iberian Peninsula was ruled by Visigoths.
A significant part of the land was part of the Caliphate for approximately five and a half centuries, following the Umayyad Caliphate conquest of the Iberian Peninsula in 711 until 1249 with the conquest of Algarve by King Afonso III of Portugal during the Reconquista.
After beating the Visigoths in only a few months, the Umayyad Caliphate started expanding rapidly in the peninsula. Beginning in 711, the land that is now Portugal became part of the vast Umayyad Caliphate's empire of Damascus that stretched from the Indus river in India up to the South of France until its collapse in 750, a year in which the west of the empire gained its independence under Abd-ar-Rahman I with the creation of the Emirate of Córdoba. After almost two centuries, the Emirate turned into the Caliphate of Córdoba in 929 until its dissolution a century later in 1031 to no less than 23 small kingdoms, called Taifas.
The governors of the taifas proclaimed themselves each Emir of his province and established diplomatic relations with the Christian Kingdoms of the north. Most of Portugal fell into the hands of the Taifa of Badajoz of the Aftasid Dynasty, and after a short spell of an ephemera taifa of Lisbon in 1022, fell within the dominion of the Taifa of Seville of the Abbadids poets. The Taifa period ended with the conquest of the Almoravids that came from Morocco in 1086 with a decisive victory in the Battle of Sagrajas followed one century later by the Almohads also coming from Marrakesh in 1147 after the second period of Taifa.
Al-Andalus was divided into different districts called Kura. Gharb Al-Andalus at its largest was constituted of ten kuras, each with a distinct capital and governor. The main cities of the period were Beja, Silves, Alcácer do Sal, Santarém, Lisboa and Coimbra.
The Muslim population of the region consisted mainly of Berbers, Arabs and native Iberian converts to Islam (the so-called Muwallad or Muladi). The Arabs were principally noblemen coming from Yemen, though they were only few in numbers they constituted the elite of the population. The Berbers were originally from the Atlas mountains and Rif mountains of North Africa and were essentially nomads. The Muslim population (or "Moors"), few in number, stayed largely in the Algarve region, and in general south of the Tejo.
After the Muslim conquests, the land between the Minho and Douro rivers maintained a significant share of its populations, between the 8th and the third quarter of the 9th century in a social and political area where there was no acting state powers. In 868, this region became dynamic and was organized as the County of Portugal (The first Count being Vímara Peres, after who the city of Guimarães is named) and appeared as part of the Galician-Asturian, Leonese and Portuguese systematic power structures.
The County essentially ceased to exist by the first time in 1071, after the Count Nuno (II) Mendes started to claim the title of King of Portucale", and subsequently died at the Battle of Pedroso, fought against Garcia II of Galicia. Garcia then, started to use the title of "King of Portucale". However, Garcia didn't last long with the title, as he was deposed by his brothers Sancho II of Castille and Alfonso VI of León. Thus, the Kingdom of Galicia, along with the territory of the county of Portucale, was absorbed by the Kingdom Of León, and later, given to Henry of Burgundy, son-in-law of Alfonso VI of León, in 1093. Henry, to whom the county was awarded by Alfonso VI for his role in reconquering land from the Moors, based his newly formed county in Bracara Augusta (nowadays Braga), capital city of the ancient Roman province, and also previous capital of several kingdoms over the first millennia.
On 24 June 1128, the Battle of São Mamede occurred near Guimarães. Afonso Henriques, Count of Portugal, defeated his mother Countess Teresa and her lover Fernando Peres de Trava, thereby establishing himself as sole leader. Afonso then turned his arms against the persistent problem of the Moors in the south. His campaigns were successful and, on 25 July 1139, he obtained an overwhelming victory in the Battle of Ourique, and straight after was unanimously proclaimed King of Portugal by his soldiers.
Afonso then established the first of the Portuguese Cortes at Lamego, where he was crowned by the Archbishop of Braga, though the validity of the Cortes of Lamego has been disputed and called a myth created during the Portuguese Restoration War. Afonso was recognized in 1143 by King Alfonso VII of León and Castile, and in 1179 by Pope Alexander III.
Afonso Henriques and his successors, aided by military monastic orders, pushed southward to drive out the Moors, as the size of Portugal covered about half of its present area. In 1249, this Reconquista ended with the capture of the Algarve on the southern coast, giving Portugal its present-day borders.
The reigns of Dinis I, Afonso IV, and Pedro I for the most part saw peace with the Christian kingdoms of Iberia, and thus the Portuguese kingdom advanced in prosperity and culture.
In 1348 and 1349, like the rest of Europe, Portugal was devastated by the Black Death. In 1373, Portugal made an alliance with England.In 1383, Juan I of Castile, husband of Beatrice of Portugal and son-in-law of Fernando I of Portugal, claimed the throne of Portugal, After Fernando's death. A faction of petty noblemen and commoners, led by João, Grandmaster of the Order of Avis, and commanded by General Nuno Álvares Pereira defeated the Castilians in the Battle of Aljubarrota. With this battle, the House of Avis became the ruling house of Portugal.
House of Vímara Peres (Counts)
- Vímara Peres (868-873)
- Lucídio Vimaranes (873-?)
- Onega Lucides/Diogo Fernandes (?-924)
- Mumadona Dias/Hermenegildo I Mendes (924-950)
- Gonçalo Mendes (950-999)
- Mendo II Gonçalves (999-1008)
- Alvito Nunes (1008-1015)
- Ilduara Mendes/Nuno I Alvites (1015-1028)
- Mendo III Nunes (1028-1050)
- Nuno II Mendes (1050-1071) (first to call himself King Of Portucale)
House Of Jiménez
- Garcia II of Galicia (1071) [only used as a honorific title, in the same way that "King of Algarve" is used today.]
House Of Burgundy
- Afonso I (1109-1185)
- Sancho I (1154-1212)
- Afonso II (1185-1223)
- Sancho II (1209-1248)
- Afonso III (1210-1279)
- Dinis (1261-1325)
- Afonso IV (1291-1357)
- Pedro (1320-1367)
- Fernando (1345-1383)
House Of Avis
- João (1357-1438)
- Afonso V (1390-1453)
For more information see main article: Portugal Family Tree (Principia Moderni III Map Game)
- Barbarian Pirates