House of Braganza

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Most Serene House of Braganza
Sereníssima Casa de Bragança

of Portugal and Brazil
Country: Kingdom of Portugal
Empire of Brazil
Parent House: Portuguese House of Burgundy
by way of the House of Aviz
  • Emperor of Brazil
  • King of the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves
  • King of Portugal
  • King of the Algarves
  • United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves
  • Prince of Brazil
  • Prince Royal of Portugal
Founder: Afonso, Duke of Braganza
Final Ruler:
United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarves:
João VI (1822)
Kingdom of Portugal:
Manuel II (1910)
Empire of Brazil:
Pedro II (1889)
Current Head: Duarte Pio, Duke of Braganza
Founding Year: 1442
Empire of Brazil:
Ethnicity: Portuguese, Brazilian

The House of Braganza (Portuguese: Casa de Bragança; Portuguese pronunciation: [bɾɐˈɣɐ̃sɐ]), officially the Most Serene House of Braganza (Portuguese: Sereníssima Casa de Bragança), is an important imperial, royal, and noble house (dynasty) of Portuguese origin. It is a branch of the House of Aviz. The House changed from being powerful dukes of Portuguese nobility, to ruling as the monarchs of Portugal and the Algarves, from 1640 to 1910. They were also monarchs of Brazil, from 1815 to 1889. The heir to the Portuguese throne was usually given the title of "Duke of Braganza".

History[change | change source]

The House of Braganza was founded in 1442. This is when Afonso, 8th Count of Barcelos, was made Duke of Braganza.[1] Alfonso (Alfonso I) was an illegitimate son of King João I of Portugal, of the House of Aviz.[1] He was made a duke by his nephew, King Afonso V of Portugal. The feudal dukes quickly collected a fortune in properties, titles, and power. By the mid 1600s, the House was the most powerful in all of Portugal. It was also of the greatest houses of Iberia.[2]

The House of Braganza became the reigning house of Brazil, first, when the United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil, and the Algarves was created in 1815.[3] The United Kingdom lasted until 1822, when the Brazilian Empire became independent from Portugal. The new Brazilian nation was led by Prince Pedro of Braganza, heir to the Portuguese throne, who ruled as Emperor Pedro I of Brazil, as well as King Pedro IV of Portugal. Until 1835, the Portuguese Braganzas were still in the line of succession to the Brazilian throne. The House was deposed (removed) from the Brazilian throne, in 1889, when Brazil was proclaimed a republic.[4]

The House continued to be the claimant house to the Brazilian throne until 1921. This is when Isabel, Princess Imperial of Brazil, daughter of Emperor Pedro II of Brazil, died. Her claim passed to her son, Prince Pedro Henrique of Orléans and Braganza. Thus the House of Orléans-Braganza became the claimant house to the former monarchy of Brazil. Pedro Henrique died in 1981. The current claimant is his eldest son, Prince Luiz.[5]

In Portugal, King Carlos I of Portugal was assassinated in 1908. Also killed in the attack was his eldest son. His younger son, Manuel II, became king.[6] When the Portuguese Republic was established, in 1910, King Manuel II and the rest of the Braganzas went into exile.[7]

Famous members[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Queen Isabel I of Castile: Power, Patronage, Persona, ed. Barbara F. Weissberger (Woodbridge, Suffolk; Rochester, NY: Tamesis, 2008), p. 21
  2. Edward McMurdo, The History of Portugal (London: S. Low, Marston, Searle, & Rivington, 1888-89), p. 363
  3. Robert Walsh, Notices of Brazil in 1828 and 1829, Volume 2 (London: F. Westley and A.H. Davis, 1830), p. 532
  4. John B. Means, 'Latin American Report: Brazil: The Hemisphere's Lost Empire', The North American Review, Vol. 257, No. 2 (Summer, 1972), pp. 9–10
  5. Roberto De Mattei, The Crusader of the 20th Century: Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira (Leominster: Gracewing, 1998), p. 99
  6. Douglas L. Wheeler, Republican Portugal: A Political History, 1910-1926 (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1978), p. 44
  7. Paul H. Lewis, Latin Fascist Elites: The Mussolini, Franco, and Salazar Regimes (Westport, CT: Praeger, 2003), p. 130